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Home: Diseases & Conditions: Acne: Overview

Acne: What Is It?

Your Guide To Acne

Acne is one of the most common skin disorders. The most common form of acne is called acne vulgaris. On this website, whenever we refer to acne, we are referring to acne vulgaris, unless we specify.

Acne is a disease of hair follicles and develops in stages. Beginning with blackheads and whiteheads acne may develop into large nodules and cysts. Acne not only disfigures skin, but also affects the psychology of the person suffering from it. That is why it is important to treat it as soon as possible.

We have hair follicles all over our body except a few places such as lips, palms and the soles of our feet. These follicles are connected with sebaceous glands. Hair also grows out from these hair follicles. When the pores of the hair follicles get blocked, acne develops.

In the first stage, acne begins as whiteheads and blackheads. Blackheads are called open comedones and whiteheads are called closed comedones.

The second stage of acne is pimples or zits. They are also known as papules and pustules. Pimples form when the plugged pores get inflamed. When pimples get further infected and inflamed, the third stage of acne develops. These are called as nodules and cysts.

Acne will not always develop into the more severe stages. It may stop growing after the first stage.

Where can acne develop?
Acne can develop on all the places of the body where hair follicles are located. The density of follicles is greater on the face, neck, chest, back, shoulders, neck and upper arms. Acne is therefore most common on face, arms and trunk.

Who gets acne?
Mostly teenagers suffer from acne, but people of any age can get it. Acne can affect people in their thirties, forties or above.

Article created on: June 14, 2006

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Acne & Sunshine

Despite the belief that acne gets cleared by sunshine, there is no scientific evidence to this. Excess sun can damage your skin rather than treating acne.

Click here to learn more on Sun Damage.

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