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6 Surprising Causes of Acne in Adults

Blemishes. Pimples. Zits. Acne. Whatever you call it – it is usually super frustrating. Oftentimes we think we are in the clear when we exit our teenage years, but the truth is acne can develop in our 30s, 40s, and even our 50s. There are numerous reasons for acne and some of them are more surprising than others!

Skin-care products: Thanks to media, women and men are tempted to try out the next big magic anti-aging, anti-wrinkle formula in a bottle, but some of these products may cause irritation or even acne. Sometimes, anti-acne products can even cause blemishes too. If you chronically switch up your skin-care routine and have noticed breakouts, pick one or two products and give them at least 4-6 weeks to see results.

Stress: We all know that stress can cause acne, but how and why? When we feel stress, our body releases an inflammatory chemical called neuropeptides which causes skin inflammation… which can cause a breakout of acne. Stress can also increase the severity of your acne breakouts, the more stressed, the bigger the breakout. Yoga, deep breathing, or even just some alone time can help reduce stress.

Diet: Having a diet full of bread, pasta, rice, sugar and flour can be a common cause of acne. These foods digest quickly and result in a fast rise in blood sugar – the rise in blood sugar triggers a rapid production of insulin. This triggers your body to release male hormones which then encourages your skin to secret sebum, a greasy secretion that acne causing bacteria love. Try limiting the foods listed above and see if your acne breakouts decrease.

Cell Phones: Cell phones are a breeding ground for acne causing bacteria. Constantly having your cellphone pressed against your face, doesn’t give your pores a chance to breathe and puts all that bacteria on your skin. If you’re on your phone a lot, try to not keep it pressed directly up against your face, or look into investing in a handsfree headset.  Also, don’t forget to sanitize your phone as often as possible!

Air Pollution: Unfortunately, this is one we can’t control too much. However, the environment plays a big role in our overall skin health. The air is full of microscopic debris and dirt and that extra layer on our skin is not ideal. Washing your face daily (preferably twice daily), will help rid of your skin of any surface debris.

Dry Skin: Of course, acne is associated with oily skin, but having dry skin can cause breakouts too. Extremely dry skin can have microscopic cracks which bacteria can get into and cause acne.

These are just some of the causes of acne, but the truth is, there are many causes. If you suffer from adult acne and are ready for some relief, please call our office to set up a consultation.

Disclaimer: This blog provides general information and discussion about medical, cosmetic, mohs, and surgical dermatology. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed dermatologist or other health care worker.