A CLOSER LOOK AT ACNE, ITS TYPES AND TREATMENTS

As discussed, many times, acne is an inflammatory condition that affects the pilosebaceous unit (relating to hair and the sebaceous glands).

Whilst its cause is often genetics, we also know that inflammation or hyperkeratinisation (a disorder of the cells lining the inside of a hair follicle that may lead to a blocked pore) and an over production of sebum by the sebaceous glands can also play a role. Further, bacteria – usually found in the hair follicle and that multiples and flourishes when a pore is blocked, can also contribute to the cause of acne.

There are also other aggravating factors such as over exposure to the sun, diet (especially high glycaemic diets, over consumption of milk and other dairy products and fatty foods), stress, hormonal imbalances, and pollution, amongst other.

To render an acne diagnosis, one needs to have comedones (small flesh-coloured acne lesions), with or without inflammatory papules, pustules, and cysts.

Affecting mainly the face, but also found on other areas of the body including the chest, shoulders, and neck – the severity of acne will depend on the extent of involvement and the type of lesions one has.

Acne is usually classified as either mild, moderate, or severe – typically on a grade from one to four.

 

Grade 1 – Mild

This grade of acne involves mainly comedones, with very few papules and pustules and is usually found on the face. Almost all patients with this type of acne will respond well to topical therapy containing benzoyl peroxide and/ or salicylic acid.

Grade 2 – Moderate

This involves comedones with multiple papules and pustules. Patients will typically experience comedones and a few papules and pustules, with lesions now also appearing on the chest and back. Again, patients experiencing grade 2 acne will also typically respond well to topical therapies. However, should the response to this treatment be poor, the patient could also benefit from an oral antibiotic.


Grade 3 – Moderate to Severe

Regardless of where on the body (face or other areas), these patients will have few comedones, multiple papules and pustules in addition to the occasional cyst and nodules. In terms of treatment, this patient can still respond well to oral antibiotics together with topical treatments. Those who do not respond well to the above treatment can be switched to oral isotretinoin.

Grade 4 – Severe
Again, regardless of whether it appears on the face or body, these patients will mainly experience nodules and cysts together with comedones, papules and pustules. They are also at a high risk of atrophic scarring. For effective management, patients will require both topical and systemic treatments such as isotretinoin.

Regardless of which grade or severity, it is key that all patients commit to a good skin care routine (morning and evening) together with a broad-spectrum sunscreen during the day. Patients should also try to minimise consumption of any foods that could further aggravate the condition as well as the reduction of stress as far as possible and the inclusion of antioxidants to counter-balance the impact of environmental pollution.

OXY’s recommended four step programme – Cleanse, Tone, Moisturise, Treat!

Cleanse
Choose from –

  • OXY Face Wash (regular and sensitive)
    Specially formulated to deep cleanse pores by removing dirt and oil. As part of a daily skin care routine, it unblocks pores and helps to keep skin looking clean, clear and healthy. OXY Face Wash moisturises skin leaving it feeling softer and smoother.
  • OXY Cleansing Soap Bar (regular tea tree soap bar)
    Spots and blackheads are the results of pores becoming blocked by oil, bacteria and dirt. OXY Cleansing Bar will keep your skin clean and clear of blemishes. Daily use will assist in the prevention of spots and blackheads whilst controlling excess oil. Contains 2% Salicylic Acid.
  • OXY Facial Wipes
    Visibly removes oil and dirt. The anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of Salicylic Acid assists in keeping your skin spot free. Clogged pores are opened, and bacteria neutralised. Salicylic Acid causes skin cells to shed more rapidly allowing for new skin growth. This product may make your skin more sensitive to the sun. Apply a sunscreen of at least SPF 15 whilst using this product and for a week after discontinued use.
  • OXY Charcoal Soap
    Effectively cleans skin and pores with absorbing activated charcoal, preventing oil and dirt build-up that causes whiteheads and blackheads.
  • OXY Daily Anti-Spot Face Scrub
    Gentle exfoliating action will unblock pores for a cleaner and smoother skin. The anti-inflammatory properties of Salicylic Acid will fight bacteria and assist in keeping your skin spot free. It also assists in skin cells shedding more rapidly, allowing for new skin growth. Extracts of Aloe will soothe troubled skin whilst Oleracea Extract assists in cell regeneration. Skin is left feeling soft and moisturised.
  • OXY Charcoal Mask 3-in-1
    contains charcoal which binds with and visibly removes dirt from pores leaving skin clearer and purified.  Gentle exfoliation leaves skin smoother.  Contains Salicylic Acid.

Tone

  • OXY Cleansing Toner
    A unique formula that deep cleanses the skin, removing harmful dirt and impurities. Salicylic Acid assists in the removal of dead skin cells whilst added glycerine leaves the skin feeling soft, balanced and moisturised.

Moisturise

  • OXY Moisturiser
    Contains SPF15, essential in protecting the skin against harmful UVA and UVB rays whilst nourishing and moisturising the skin and controlling excess oil. Contains Salicylic Acid and Tea Tree Oil which has natural anti-inflammatory and soothing properties. Necessity for consumers treating problem skin & seeking sun protection.

 

Treat

  • OXY Emergency Zit Blitzer
    A triple-action antibacterial product with Tea Tree Oil and chamomile that visibly reduces the size and redness of those unwanted spots within hours. The anti-germ system contains alcohol to help destroy spot causing germs.
  • OXY 5 Lotion
    With antibacterial properties specially formulated to exfoliate, suppress excess skin oil production, soften and remove dead skin and help clear existing pimples and blackheads. Contains 5g Benzoyl Peroxide.
  • OXY 10 Lotion
    Contains 10g Benzoyl Peroxide, a scheduled product formulated for the mild treatment of acne, pimples and blackheads. Its antibacterial properties are specially formulated to exfoliate, suppress excess skin oil production, soften and remove dead skin and help clear existing pimples and blackheads.
  • OXY Scar Care
    An innovative formulation combining a Vitamin Complex and Turmeric to assist in fading out post acne and pimple scars whilst keeping your skin clear of spots and blackheads.