Surely on more than one occasion, you have heard that eating chocolate favors the appearance of acne, right? Or that seawater is good for the healing of pimples and their marks. We tell you what is a myth and what is truth in all these legends that surround the appearance and disappearance of facial acne.
There are countless myths about the appearance of acne: from foods that can favor its appearance to daily actions that make these unwanted marks disappear. But what is the truth in all this?
We will begin by explaining what acne is: Acne is an inflammatory condition that affects the pilosebaceous follicle with inflammatory-type lesions that can present different degrees of severity and are distributed predominantly on the face but can also appear on the back, neck, and chest. chest.
The causes of the appearance of acne are mainly three:
- Sebum hypersecretion: The sebaceous gland increases its production of sebum as a result of hormonal influence, especially due to the influence of dihydrotestosterone, which acts directly on the sebocytes of the sebaceous glands, stimulating their production of sebum.
- Increased degree of keratinization of the follicular necks: This increased keratinization can lead to blockage of the follicular duct that gives rise to white (closed) or open (blackheads) comedones.
- Increased proliferation of bacteria: As a consequence of the increased secretion of sebum and the obturation of the duct, the increase in proliferation of bacteria is increased, specifically two microorganisms (propionibacterium acnes and corynebacterium acnes) are responsible. These bacteria act by releasing enzymes that break down sebum triglycerides, releasing fatty acids that are comedogenic and have an irritant effect, while exerting a calming effect on inflammatory cells such as macrophages and neutrophils.
Other factors that also influence acne are hereditary, genetic, and even emotional or psychological factors, including some medications or cosmetics. Knowing what it is and what causes the appearance of acne, these are some myths and truths about its appearance:
Foods that cause acne
One of the most repeated statements is that "chocolate causes acne." However, there is no scientific evidence to confirm that chocolate (or other fatty foods such as peanuts) directly cause acne. However, our diet can indeed influence the health of our skin and, therefore, favor the appearance of acne. Therefore, it is essential that to make your skin look healthy, you take care of it both outside and inside.
Stress and acne
Stress causes the activation of inflammatory mediators, whose receptors are partly located in the sebaceous glands. This activation causes localized inflammation and increases the generation of sebum, which can become acne, so stress, although not directly, can influence the appearance of acne.
Water and acne
Maintaining good hydration will help our skin look much more hydrated and healthy, but it will not favor the disappearance of pimples or blackheads. In addition, contrary to what many people believe, washing our face many times a day will not improve the condition of our skin, but rather, by altering its pH, it can lead to the appearance of a greater amount of acne or other dermatological disorders.
Sex and acne
Surely you've heard so much that sex and the lack of it cause the appearance of acne. Dermatologists insist on refuting this myth that is becoming more and more popular since, although sexual desire produces an activation of hormones, it is not linked to a greater appearance of pimples or blackheads.
Do not touch the pimples
We have all learned that we should not handle any pimples if we do not want more to appear, but is this true? Dermatologists say that this action does not cause a greater amount of acne, but it can increase inflammation in the affected area. In addition, we must take into account that poor handling of acne can leave lasting marks on our skin that are difficult to remove or that we can superinfect the area by handling comedones with our hands.
Surely you have also heard at some time that acne is a transient disease, typical of adolescence and that, therefore, it does not need treatment or care to disappear, right?
As you can see, there are also myths related to the treatment of acne and its cure, since this skin disorder does require control and dermatological treatment. There are different treatments adapted to each skin and the acne status of each patient.