At the first sign of pimples, the immediate reaction is to get rid of it, stat. But before you go straight into battle mode, you have to know what you’re dealing with it. After all, not every kind of breakout is the same. Different types of acne require different approaches to treatment.
How to remove different types of acne
Basically, acne is the result of clogged hair follicles. Oil and other debris on the skin’s surface clog the pores, creating small infections called pimples. While most people will experience acne at some point in their lives, signs and symptoms may vary depending on the severity of each.
Acne can be classified into two categories: inflammatory and non-inflammatory. Whiteheads and blackheads are considered non-inflammatory, while pustules, nodules, and cysts fall under the inflammatory category.
Here, we go into each type and learn how to remove it, the right way:
Whiteheads are exactly what the name suggests: little white packs of buildup that sit on top of your skin. This is the earliest stage of a pimple. The white bump is a distillation of fatty oils from sebum and the white blood cells your body sends to combat a pimple. While categorized as non-inflammatory acne, whiteheads can become infected if left untreated.
How to remove: Whiteheads can be treated through gentle exfoliation and thorough cleansing.
These are formed the same way as whiteheads, except these open at the surface. The black color is caused by the sebum being exposed to oxygen and becoming oxidized. Blackheads are usually small and hard, but can grow in size and even lead to a cyst forming under the buildup, below the skin’s surface.
How to remove: Also through cleansing and exfoliation. Consider occasional deep cleaning with clay masks. Ensure that products are non-comedogenic.
These are your typical pimples, filled with a white or yellowish tip and red at the bottom. Pustules are usually painful and tender. The buildup goes deeper than whiteheads and blackheads, making it more difficult to clear out.
A more severe type of inflammatory acne, nodules are large, inflamed bumps that are sensitive to the touch. These are filled with pus and bacteria deep in the skin’s surface. Left untreated, the infection will worsen and may lead to more nodules in the surrounding pores.
These are a very severe type, characterized by large and inflamed bumps that can last for months. Cysts are formed beneath the skin and can be very painful.
How to remove inflammatory acne: Pustules and nodules, which are milder cases of inflammatory acne, can be treated with topical treatments. If home remedies don’t clear up your acne, you may want to see your dermatologist. Depending on the severity, your doctor may prescribe oral acne medication.
http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/acne/basics/symptoms/con-20020580 – reviewed by Lawrence E. Gibson, M.D.
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