What causes acne in women

Acne can be a distressing condition that affects a sufferer psychologically and physically. As well as causing painful bumps and spots on the skin, it can also affect a person's confidence and self esteem - especially when it continues to exist well into adulthood.

Acne is caused when the small holes in the skin become blocked - usually because the body's sebaceous glands are producing too much oil. This can happen for a number of reasons, including the following:

  1. Your period. Just before your period is due, a flare up of hormones can cause this over-production of sebum by the sebaceous glands, which in turn leads to acne. While this kind of acne can begin during adolescence, many women suffer from it into their twenties and later life.
  2. Pregnancy. As with your periods, being pregnant causes hormonal changes in the body, which means you can suffer from spots in the same way that you do at that time of the month.
  3. Stress. Whether you are worrying about work or your personal life, high levels of stress can cause acne and spots.
  4. Cosmetics. Certain types of make-up and beauty products can give some women acne, especially greasy moisturisers and lotions. If you find you get spots after using a new product, you may need to experiment with new cosmetics.
  5. The pill. While certain contraceptive pills can clear up some women's acne, the pill can also cause other women to get spots. We are all very different, so it is important to pay attention to how a new medicine such as the pill affects your body and talk to your doctor if you have any concerns.

Whatever may be causing your acne, a dermatologist can help to reduce its appearance with skin treatments such as laser treatment, which can effectively improve your skin and help to boost your self esteem so you feel confident about your looks again.

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