Archive for the ‘Acne’ Category

Water Helps Acne?

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Water plays one of the most important roles in maintaining clear, healthy skin. The amount of water you drink each day is far more important in treating acne than worrying about avoiding specific foods, plus its a lot easier to do! I have personally changed my entire diet in attempts to have acne-free skin, and it is definitely not worth it. For one, it is extremely difficult to change such ingrained habits like your diet. And for two, it doesn’t do much good anyway! Even eating a completely raw food diet (just fruits, veggies, nuts, and seeds) I still had break-outs! I would not recommend a diet change to anybody looking to get clear skin, because your diet is NOT whats ultimately causing your acne.

However, I very small but monumental change you can make in your lifestyle is to consume more water. Yup, its as simple as staying hydrated. Our bodies are made of water, and we need it for everything we do. Water will help your body to:

  • Digest and make use of all the nutrients in your diet
  • Flush out your system of bad bacteria and toxins
  • Help boost circulation and provide healthy nutrients in the blood
  • Promote healthy kidney function
  • Support a healthy metabolism
  • Regulate body temperature
  • Speed up the healing process

All of these benefits (and there are MANY more) contribute to one common good: keeping your body in balance. The #1 cause of acne is a bodily imbalance – usually hormonal or stress related. Once you start keeping yourself hydrated, you will probably see several other health benefits besides healthier skin including higher energy, fewer headaches, a more positive attitude, and an overall feeling of well-being.

Guess what? 75% of Americans are considered chronically dehydrated! This means there is a likely chance that YOU are dehydrated too? So how can you tell if you are getting enough water?

Well – the unfortunate thing is that a chronically dehydrated person loses the ability to effectively notice when they are thirsty! So you may not think you are dehydrated because you are rarely thirsty, but if you’re not getting 6-8 glasses of pure water each day you are not getting enough!

  • Do you have any symptoms of dehydration?
  • Fatigue
  • Dull headaches or migraines
  • Poor short-term memory
  • Foggy head
  • Sore lower back
  • Joint pain/irritability
  • Mild depression
  • Darkly colored urine
  • Chills
  • Head rush
  • ACNE!!

Its amazing when trying to cure diseases and conditions that we fail to remember something as simple as WATER. Water keeps you healthy!

Treatment Options for Acne Scars

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Acne is a very popular skin condition that affects up to 80% of people sometime in their life. Many people recover from acne without any scarring, but there are a few people that are left with scars on their skin. After an acne outbreak has healed, there is usually a red or hyper pigmented mark left on the skin, but this is not a scar. This will go away within the year and if no more lesions are produced in that area, the skin will heal normally. Acne scars usually form when a person has had many outbreaks and has suffered with acne for quite some while. Acne scars are also caused by people picking their lesions and their scabs. If they pick at the skin, the skin is constantly aggravated resulting in scarring of the skin. If you suffer from acne scars there are a couple of treatments available, but your skin must be clean of any active acne outbreaks before any of the procedures can be done.

Also, there are different kinds of acne scars. The first is called “icepick” scars. These scars are usually narrow and extend deeply into the skin. They look they a person was punctured with an icepick. The second type of scar is boxcar. A boxcar scar is round or oval and have sharp edges. Boxcar scars can either be shallow or deep. The third type of acne scar is rolling. A rolling are caused by tethering of normal appearing skin, resulting in the skin looking like it is rolling. Now, let’s go over the type of treatments.

Dermabrasion
Dermabrasion is the process of “sanding” the skin away. A doctor does this to get rid of the top layers of skin to slough off the scar tissue. This procedure is only used for shallow scars and imperfections and could not be used on “icepick” scars. The approximate cost of the procedure is $1500 and more than one procedure is usually required. For a few days after treatment your skin will look like it has been scraped and then a scab will form. After the scab has fallen off, the skin will be red for a couple more weeks and then will return to normal color.

Laser Resurfacing
Laser resurfacing involves the use of a laser to remove skin so that new skin can grow in it’s place. This is a fairly new procedure but some doctors claim that this procedure is quite successful as they are able to have better accuracy with the laser to remove the scarring. There are two different tyopes of lasers available, the CO2 and the erbium. Laser resurfacing is also only used on shallow scars. A procedure will cost you around $300 and more than one time may be neccessary. After treatment, the skin will most likely be swelled up and red and you will be provided with an ointment to apply to the skin. The skin will have a red appearance to it for several weeks and will slowly fade back to normal color.

Chemical Peels.
Chemical peels consist of applying different acids to the skin to remove the top layer of skin so that a smoother layer can appear. Chemical peels are only used on minor acne scars. The procedure only takes approximately fifteen minutes and they are often repeated for optimum results. Chemical peels cost approximately $750 and usually must be repeated. After treatment, some redness and swelling may be seen. Also some flaking and drying of the skin is common.

Punch Techniques.
There are a couple of different punch techniques. The first is punch replacement. This is were the scar is removed with a punch , much like hair transplants, and then replaced with a skin graft. This is usually the best technique to remove deep scars. The second technique is punch excision. This consist of removing the scar and closing up the wound and letting it heal on it’s own. The last technique is punch elevation. This is were the scar is cut loose, but not removed and then it is put back with the level of the normal skin. Punch techniques may take up to several weeks to heal. Punch techniques cost approximately $50.

Subcision.
Subcision is were the scar is detached from the underlying deeper tissue. A blood clot develops under the surface and helps to even out the skin by pooling into the scar area. Usually 1-3 treatments are needed for this to be successful. Bruising and swelling occur after treatment. This treatment can be used on all types of scars. You can get costs of the procedure by calling your doctor as there is a wide range.

Augmentation.
Augmentation involves injecting fat or collagen into the scar so that is becomes level with the surface of the skin. Collagen injections are temporary and only last about six months. This treatment is best for the deeper acne scars. Collagen can cost anywhere from $300-$700 per treatment. There is no recovery time after the procedure.

Saline Injections.
Saline is injected into the scar which causes more collagen to grow and fill into the scar. Four to five sessions a couple weeks apart are needed for this to work. Saline injections are most successful at shallow scars and rolling scars. The cost is approximately $100 per session. Recovery is relatively quick on this treatment.

As you can see there are quite a few options for the treatment of acne scars, but even with all these options, not all scars are to be removed completely. There still may be some residual scarring even after several treatments. You need to discuss the treatments with your doctor to see which one is best for you.

Source: National Acne Organization

Treating Acne with Green Tea

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Two of the most popular over the counter methods to treat acne are benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid. Acne causing bacteria is destroyed by benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid causes the top layers of dead skin cells to slough off. New skin cells are then formed, thereby reducing the likelihood of the pores being blocked. This, in turn, lessens the chance for another acne breakout.

Each of these methods has side effects that users need to be aware of. Benzoyl peroxide can cause redness, dryness and skin irritation. It also causes free radicals to form, therefore sun exposure should be avoided and sunscreen should be used. Salicylic acid can also cause dryness and skin irritation.

Why not treat your acne naturally, without the possible side effects of over the counter medications?

Green tea can be quite effective as an acne treatment. The benefits of green tea for one’s health are well known.

The secret of green tea is that it contains catechin polyphenols, especially epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). EGCG is a potent anti-oxidant. It not only inhibits the growth of cancer cells, it kills cancer cells without harming healthy tissue. It also lowers bad (LDL) cholesterol and inhibits abnormal formation of blood clots (which is one of the leading causes of heart attacks and strokes). It helps reduce inflammation, rid the body of toxins, and prevents infections by killing bacteria, even the bacteria that causes dental decay!

What is amazing is that green tea, as well as white, oolong, and black tea, all come from the same plant – camellia sinensis. So why is green tea so beneficial whereas the other teas are not? The secret lies in how the tea leaves are processed.

With green tea, the leaves are picked and preserved, either by steaming or baking, to keep them from being fermented, or oxidized. In making oolong and black tea, the leaves are picked and exposed to the air for a period of time, during which time the leaves ferment. Oolong tea is allowed to ferment only partially, whereas with black tea the leaves are fermented completely.

White tea is made mainly from the buds of tea leaves. It is processed very little, which can mean it may be beneficial with regards to fighting disease, however, the real star of the four teas is definitely green tea.

Green tea’s antioxidant and antibacterial properties make it extremely useful in fighting acne. It can be taken internally as a drink and/or applied topically to the skin.

Following are some methods for applying green tea to the skin:

1. Green tea and oatmeal mask
3 tablespoons of oatmeal
1 tablespoon of brown sugar
1 tablespoon of honey
leaves of one green tea bag
1/4 cup hot water
Mix the hot water, green tea leaves and the oatmeal into a paste. Blend and stir in the honey and brown sugar. Apply the mask to your face and leave it on for about 15 minutes. Rinse with warm water.

2. Green tea and egg mask
Pour boiling water over a green tea bag, as if preparing it to drink, and let it cool. Then mix the tea thoroughly with the white of an egg. Apply the mask to your face and leave on for 20-30 minutes You’ll feel your face becoming tight. Then rinse the mask off with warm water.

3. Rejuvenating green tea mask
½ teaspoon green tea powder (try a Korean store if you’re having difficulty finding it)
1 teaspoon flour (any kind is fine)
warm water
Mix the green tea powder and flour together, then add the water, a little at a time. The mixture should be a thin paste that won’t run down your face. Apply it all over your face. Leave on for 10-15 minutes, then rinse off thoroughly with warm water. It’s best to use this mask every day.

4. Make a cup of green tea and dab it on the acne.

5. Use the tea bag (after making tea with it) and dab your skin with the tea bag. Rinse it off after the tea has dried on your face.

There have also been studies that have shown that creams containing green tea have been as effective in treating acne as 4% solution of benzoyl peroxide.

And with all the benefits of green tea, the only possible side effect green tea might have is insomnia. Green tea contains caffeine and, although it contains less than other teas and coffee, you probably shouldn’t drink it before going to bed.

Whether you use green tea topically and/or drink it as a beverage, it could prove to be an effective, natural, and safe acne treatment for you.

The above information is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace any health care services you need.

Top 10 Treatments for Acne

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

As a woman who has suffered from acne in her teens, I can tell you that acne is much more serious than people realize. It does not only effect you physically, but mentally, socially, and emotionally. You feel like you wanna self destruct because it isn’t something that can go away, right away. Although, I have never went to the dermatologist nor visited any medical professional to be treated for my acne, I’ve learned to manage it on my own and eventually get rid of it completely.

Regardless of being efficient or effective, treating acne is much more complicated than people realize. However; if you can understand the variety of ways that dermatologists and other medical professionals treat acne and the options available, you can fight acne.

There are a variety of treatments and options for individuals with acne, offered by medical professionals and some are hollistic remedies to which I have used. Some of them include:

1.) LASER TREATMENT or PHOTOTHERAPY – The best way to treat acne is laser treatment skin resurfacing. With the use of radiation, light, and power; lasers are destined to destroy any bacteria on your face, including acne. As you continue, not only will this fight acne, but it will prevent it from coming back and will get rid of scarring. Although it may be costly to some degree, it is worth it, as a result.

2.) BIRTH CONTROL PILLS – As Birth Control Pills are a form of contraception, they also are linked to treating moderate to severe cases of acne. I know this sounds ridiculous, but they really do help. Birth Control Pills are used for individuals (women) and work by targeting those “out of control” hormones that are linked to the cause of acne. Sometimes medical professionals recommend taking them, however; they are not recommended for men, although time can only tell.

3.) ANTIBIOTICS – Whether oral or topical, antibiotics are used to destroy infection and bacteria on a variety of wavelengths. The most common antibiotic used for acne treatment is called Erythromycin, as it is a both oral and topical, however; there are numerous others that are used to treat acne.

4.) ISOTRETINOIN – Isotretinoin is a strong, moderate way of controlling and treating acne. Isotretinoin is mostly used in oral form, although there are creams that possess the powerful ingredient. It is most commonly used for individuals with a severe case of acne. Although it possesses quite a few side effects, the good exceeds the bad, as a result. Some brands of isotretinoin include: Roaccutane, Accutane, Claravis, and Isotrex.

5.) ASPIRIN – Although I have discovered that Aspirin helps on my own, through my own experience, I’ve heard that some medical professionals recommend using aspirin daily (especially if you suffer from an acute case of acne) and including aspirin in your daily skincare regime.

6.) OTC TOPICAL SOLUTIONS – Some dermatologists and other medical professionals believe that some “over the counter” (OTC) solutions work best to manage and treat acne. This can include everything from Rentin-A to the standard Proactiv regime.

7.) MICRODERMABRASION – Although microdermabrasion is a procedure that is used commonly to resurface the skin and restore youthfulness and glow, it’s been said by several professionals that microdermabrasion works amazingly to not only treat acne, but to prevent it from coming back.

8.) EXTRACTION – Whether comedo or surgical, several medical dermatologists and other medical professionals believe this will not only get rid of acne and prevent it from coming back, but find the actual cause so they can prevent it in the future. Most doctors who attempt any extraction use several devices and tools.

9.) SUNLIGHT – Even though some people believe the sun is your enemy, in reality it is your best friend. Some professionals believe that the sun is really good for your skin because as it promotes vitamin D and it’s radiation, as well as rays is so powerful, it invades your body like an abyss and helps control hormonal balance, which contributes to acne. Without the help of a medical professional, I’ve discovered that this does have the potential of working.

10.) CHEMICAL PEELS – These peels are made from a variety of acids and natural ingredients that are linked to fighting acne and battling it, as a whole. They vary on type and the individual chemicals involved. It’s been said by several professionals that chemical peels not only battle acne, but prevent it from returning.

Three Herbal Teas for Acne Relief

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Green tea isn’t the only tea that is reputed to help those suffering from acne. A myriad of herbal teas can help clear skin as well.

Rooibos Tea

Rooibos tea, otherwise known as “red bush” tea, is a tea popular in South Africa. Rooibos tea is full of antioxidants, is caffeine free, and is also a lesser known remedy for acne. Rooibos tea has many of the antioxidants found in green tea yet it is conveniently caffeine free, perfect for those who are sensitive to stimulants.

Rooibos tea has been used traditionally in South African culture as a natural treatment for acne and other skin conditions for many years. The well known tea company The Republic of Tea has caught wind of the skin healing benefits of rooibos tea and created a rooibos blend called Get Gorgeous Herb Tea for Clear Skin which has has been supported by many glowing reviews on websites like www.acne.org. Of course you don’t have to buy a special rooibos tea marketed toward acne sufferers as any good quality rooibos tea will suffice. Rooibos tea is growing in popularity and can be found at most grocery stores. Celestial Seasoning’s sells a pleasant, inexpensive version.

Chamomile Tea

Chamomile tea is one of the most popular herbal teas available. Commonly used as a mild sedative, gentle sleep aid, and mood enhancer, the benefits of chamomile also extend into the realm of skincare.

Chamomile’s naturally soothes not only your nerves, but your skin as well. Applied externally, it is good for reducing inflammation, which is a big component of acne. Chamomile may also help acne indirectly by reducing stress, a big cause of breakouts. Chamomile also may have blood sugar controlling properties, making it an exciting component of any anti-acne diet as unstable blood sugar has been linked to an increase in acne. Chamomile is a pleasant, mild tasting tea that can be consumed on its own or blended with other herbs. It is cheap and available at most any grocery store.

Licorice Tea

Licorice is a less conventional herbal tea ingredient that demonstrates some promise in the treatment of acne. According to a study done at the University of Padua in Italy, licorice has been shown to reduce testosterone levels. This is beneficial because an excess of testosterone has been shown to contribute to the development of acne. Licorice is found in popular tea blends such as Yogi Tea’s Egyptian Licorice which can be purchased at select major grocery stores and most health food stores.

All three of these teas have a delicate, almost sweet flavor, making them suitable for drinking alone or combining with other stronger teas. For increased benefit, one could even combine all three to make an especially effective acne fighting brew. You could start off drinking one cup a day of any of the above herbal teas (or try a blend if you are inclined) and see how how your skin reacts. If that’s not enough, maximal benefit might be derived from drinking multiple cups per day.