For years and years there has been a debate on the difference between teenage acne and adult acne and the best treatments. Times are changing and the skin and its conditions are being looked at more closely and especially acne. Acne affects 80% of the population at some stage of their life and it is becoming more common and is the most seen skin condition seen by dermatologists, skin specialist and doctors in the UK and USA.
Acne is a skin condition which brings chaos to your face through the terms of bacteria which cause inflammatory, breakouts and pimples. Teenage acne compared to adult acne is surprisingly different because skin differs with age and hormones, taking care and treatments. Why is it different? You may be asking, well I am going to explain why.
The Difference Between Teenage and Adult Acne
Teenage Acne occurs from the age of 11-13 and can go on till 50s-60s however normally ‘grows out’ at the age of 21-22 and is caused by hormonal changes and growth of the body. The skin is effected by these changes by the sebaceous glands underneath the skin. When puberty “kicks in” it tells the skins sebaceous glands to produce more oil than normal, this is to help keep the skin soft, moist and prevent from drying out. This excess oil build up sometimes 3x more than normal and this excess oil can clog the pores of your skin creating what we know as pimples or spots.
Adult Acne can be from the age of 21 -50s ma by 60s and can be very embarrassing due to it not being as common as teenage acne neverless is more common than you may think. The sebaceous glands underneath the skin arn’t producing excess oil anymore, as you grow older your skin will become more delicate, thin and sensitive to everyday winds, chemicals and temperatures. This being said can be the course of acne at older ages but the treatments for adults are different to teenagers. Hormones still play a role in acne as an adult and because the hormones are strangely connected to the sebaceous gland which produces oils for the skin still. If you are an adult and suffering from acne your not alone, it is quite common to have acne through your adult years even if you did not see it coming. Acne effects everyone at some point in there life its just when.
So what does this mean?
This means that due to the difference in skin through age, treating acne is different for adults compared to teenagers due to the excess oils and build up for dead skin cells(due to the oils). Teenagers skin is oily where as adults(21+) skin tends to be less oily and sometimes dry. Because of this, generally harsh chemicals will be proscribed by a dermatologist, skin specialist or doctor to reduce the build up of oil, breakdown existing pimples, blackheads and inflammation and reduce the chances of these coming back for teenagers.
However Adults would need to uses different creams, chemicals and face washes because acne is caused by others such as hair products, stress and sweat compared to teenagers with oil build up, dead skin cells and bacteria. Women have a higher chance of getting acne then men in their adult years due to hormones from pregnancy, menopause and general hormones.
Best Treatments For Adults And Teenagers
As said above, teenagers need different tactics to fight acne and the most common over the counter and dermatologists chemicals, gels and creams normally consist of:
- Salicylic Acid: An acid which is used to breakdown existing acne (pimples and blackheads). Salicylic Acid is an organic acid from a plant called the Salix Alba and used mainly for use on acne. Side effects are red scaling skin, sore and drying of skin. Salicylic acids main purposes are to remove dead skin cells, heal skin and help scarring.
- Benzoyl Peroxide: is used to help produce more skin, dig deep into pores to prevent comeback of bacteria and kills bacteria on the surface of the skin and in pores. Benzoyl Peroxide normally comes in 2%-5% but sometimes up to 10% and can make skin very sore, itching and sometimes burn however skin builds up resistance within a week.
- Tretinoin: Not as common as the above but is used on oily skin to help new skin grow and reduce dead skin cells. However can make skin more sensitive and ‘thinned out’.
These creams and gels can cause some minor side effects but are used on most cases of acne to clear skin up whilst helping scaring. These would benefit a teenager more than an adult because these are targeted to oil and dead skin cells which adults do not experience as much. Typical adult treatment consists of:
- Benzoyl Peroxide: This can be used for adult skin too but much lower concentrations such as 1-2% and the same Side effects apply.
- Anti Inflammatory creams: Creams that uses retinoids and anti inflammatory properties such as tea tree and Aloe Vera. Also oral antibiotics to help inflammatory.
- Birth Control Pills: Pills used to control hormones and reduce chances of breakouts. Oral use only.
Spot The Difference- The Difference Between Teenage Acne And Adult Acne. Which One Is TEENAGE And Which Is ADULT?
The male is a teenager(14) the female is a young adult (27) and the difference is noticeable between the two. The adult has less acne but more targeted pimples and inflammation areas where as the teenager has pimples, redness and blackheads all over an area. Inflammation is what makes pimples, spots and zits red because the skin is trying to fight the infection which leaves red raised marks on the surface of the skin.
Acne for Teenagers and Adults unfortunately leaves scars once its been and gone. Scars I am sure you know are permanent and not pleasant because they can cause depression, low self esteem and a confidence issue. All skin conditions have side effects and there are ways to help reduce scars without surgery or lasering. Natural ways to help scars are very popular and do help without many side effects because they are natural and good for you. Aloe Vera and tea tree oil are very helpful to rebuild scar tissue and damaged skin and reduce inflammation however salicylic acid does the same to scars.
Hope This helped