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July 16, 2020

Chest Acne : Best ways to get rid of it

One of the vastly seen skin disease in adolescents is acne. It affects about 80-90% adolescents attaining pubertal age. Some of this acne also continues into adulthood leaving some kind of psychological and social impact. Acne, also called as acne vulgaris is a chronic skin condition that results from dead skin cells and sebum from the sebaceous glands.

Overview

Acne presents itself in the form of pimples, blackheads, whiteheads, and scarring. Acne are common in body parts which consists of higher density of sebaceous glands – especially on the face, back and chest. Some of these inflammatory acne lesions can cause permanent scarring

Causes of chest acne 

  • Hormonal imbalances : Acne are commonly seen in adolescents as sebum production from the sebaceous gland is at its peak during puberty due to a drastic shift in hormone levels and metabolism. During puberty, there is a surge in some hormone levels like androgen, which causes the sebaceous gland to enlarge and produce more sebum. Acne are also usually seen is women attaining menses and women with hormonal imbalances like polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS); increased levels of male sex hormone – androgen
  • Diet : Diet also influences the occurrence of these acnes. Consumption of large amounts of dairy products like milk, cheese, butter, cottage cheese can lead to development of acne as these products increase mucous production in the body which acts as a trigger for clogging the pores. Also, a diet that is high in fat and refined sugars is a cause for acnes. Research has shown that diet containing milk and milk products stimulate the release of insulin and insulin like growth factor -1 (IGF-1), which further increase the production of androgen hormones, sebum and thereby, acne.
  • Exercise : As we all know, exercising is good for the body and keeps us healthy, sweating during exercise in some people can lead to chest acne caused by friction between the skin surface and the sweat on the clothes. Not showering immediately after a workout session can cause the sweat to harbour on the skin and clog pores, thus causing acne
  • Dyes and perfumes : Certain dyes and perfumes can cause chest acne. These may be present in washing detergents that are routinely used
  • Sunlight : Unprotected sun exposure can cause damage to the skin leading to acne on the parts exposed – like chest. Sunlight causes dehydration on the skin’s surface and the body produces extra sebum to help in rehydrating the skin
  • Comedogenic skincare products : Skincare products that are greasy, oil – based can lead to accumulation of toxins, sebum and bacteria on the skin surface leading to acne breakouts

Ways to treat chest acne 

  • Salicylic acid : This works to reduce sebum production from the sebaceous glands in the skin pores. Salicylic acid causes drying the skin surface and eliminates skin debris that can potentially clog pores. It is one of the most promising option to treat stubborn acne. It is available in cleansing toners, gels, creams and facewash
  • Benzoyl peroxide : This can help in getting rid of the bacteria and excess sebum on the face. It also helps in reducing inflammation in the adjacent areas. Benzoyl peroxide comes as a component in ointments and gels to be applied either on the spot or entire face, depending on the severity

Natural Remedies for chest acne 

Natural home remedies are the safest and perhaps more effective than other medical methods as it not only helps in treating acne, but also prevents them recurring in the future

  • Tea tree oil : Essential oils like tea tree oil is been increasingly popular as an alternative for treatment of acne and whiteheads. Research shows that 5% tea tree oil solution helps in reducing the amount and overall severity of whiteheads. The antiseptic and antibacterial properties of tea tree oil can reduce oiliness on the skin which can lead to reduction in whitehead formation. The antimicrobial function of the oil is due to its capacity to damage the cell wall structure of bacteria. Few drops of tea tree oil can combined with a carrier oil like almond oil or olive oil
  • Aloe vera : Aloe vera is a plant that is most commonly used in the treatment of many skin diseases, especially acne because of its inherent anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It gently moisturizes and nourishes the skin, making it more supple and soft. It can be applied directly on the affected areas
  • Honey : Honey has been one of the ancient go-to for many conditions like burns and wounds. It has multiple medicinal properties – especially improving the healing process. Honey also has some antibacterial properties which help in fighting infections and thus reduce acne. Honey can be combined with cinnamon to make a honey and cinnamon mask and used on acne-prone skin as an effective home remedy
  • Charcoal mask : Activated charcoal has become very popular in recent times as a skincare product. It is widely been used in body scrubs, masks and cleansers. Activated charcoal helps in absorbing all the excess oil on the surface of the skin and removes skin impurities. This proves to be very effective in unclogging pores and preventing acne either overall or on specific spots on the chest

Key points for preventing chest acne 

Certain simple everyday skincare routine can help in preventing chest acne. These include :

  • Maintaining a good skin hygiene and keeping the body clean is a basic thumb rule for keeping all kinds of skin diseases away
  • Using a shower gel that contains salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide helps in preventing and treating acne on the chest and back
  • Wearing comfortable fitting, loose gym wear is advisable to allow for some breathable space during exercise and it has to be followed by immediate showering. If showering immediately is not possible, cleansing wipes that control sweat accumulation can be used
  • Exfoliating regularly like once or twice in a week, especially in people who have oily skin helps to clear out dead skin layer and rejuvenates the skin
  • Applying sunscreen (non-greasy, water or gel based) of SPF 30 or higher before sun exposure can significantly reduce the chances of skin damage and developing acne
  • Consuming a diet rich in antioxidants, maintaining good hydration levels, avoiding sugar containing foods and excess dairy help in reducing overall acne
  • Using non-comedogenic make-up, water based or gel based skincare products do not clog pores and thus, reduce the chances of acne development

Conclusion

Chest acne is common in some people. It can be treated with some home remedies and changing lifestyle routine. It is best to seek medical advice by an expert for severe acne.

References

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352647517300862
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18561586
  3. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/abd1806-4841.20198203

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