What is Acne ?

Acne Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

Acne is a common skin disorder experienced by many Maltese people, both young and old alike. It also goes by the term acne vulgaris. The condition is characterised by small spots, usually on the face and chest. It can also be found at the back or on the shoulders. These spots have variations, which will be tackled here later.

Acne is usually due to a rise in testosterone levels in both males and females entering puberty. The condition generally clears up once a person reaches his twenties. Fluctuating hormone levels in women may cause acne to persist until adulthood.

The skin condition is highly treatable, but the response of patients affected with acne may vary significantly. Some people clear up quickly, but others may have persistent spots that respond slowly to treatment.

Most people get acne during their lives.

You may consult our online doctors regarding your acne. Our doctors can help you identify any specific cause of your acne and provide you with a treatment plan to help clear up your spots.

What are the Symptoms of Acne?

The most prevalent acne symptom is the appearance of spots on different body parts, mostly on the face and chest. Acne spots come in various types:

  • Blackheads – These are also known as open comedones and look like tiny blackish or yellowish spots.
  • Whiteheads are also called closed comedones, with whitish or yellowish tips that feel harder than blackheads.
  • Cysts – These are large lumps filled with pus.
  • Papules – These spots are small pinkish-red bumps on the skin. They are warm to the touch and are often inflamed.
  • Pustules – These are pus-filled, inflamed bumps. Pustules appear as white and yellow spots and are sore to the touch.
  • Nodules – These spots are large and painfully inflamed lumps that are sore and hard.
  • People with acne experience highly different varieties of conditions. Acne can be mild or severe. It can also stay for long periods or suddenly flare up occasionally.

Getting an Acne Diagnosis?

You can obtain a diagnosis of acne through a video consultation with our physicians.

Our doctors will ask about your symptoms and ask you to show the body areas affected by the condition. From there, they can diagnose how mild or severe your acne is and deduce various causes that may have started it.

What causes acne?

Sebaceous glands in your skin produce excess oil than needed. These extra oils combine with dead skin cells and form blockages, eventually developing into tiny pimples, whiteheads, and blackheads.

Bacteria can also enter the trapped oil inside the follicles. When this happens, more prominent inflamed spots begin to occur.

Acne Treatment

Benzoyl peroxide is a popular over-the-counter remedy used to treat mild acne successfully. Prescription medications are indicated for more severe cases.

These are the possible acne treatment that our physicians may suggest to you if you have severe acne:

  • Topical antibiotics
  • Retinoids
  • Antibiotic pills
  • Hormonal birth control pills
  • Azelaic acid

Acne in Pregnancy

Acne is typically seen in the first three months of pregnancy. This is usually a temporary flare-up due to raging hormones. It often passes or calms down after the first trimester is done.
Doctors do not prescribe oral treatments for acne in pregnant women and those women trying to conceive. Medications are risky during this time since they can negatively affect you or your unborn baby.