How to Treat Hormonal Acne
What is acne? Acne is a skin condition in which the body produces excess oil or sebum and this sebum clogs the skin hair follicles leading to a white or black bump on the skin.
What is Hormonal Acne?
Acne is usually caused due to hormonal changes during puberty in girls and boys, and during pregnancy, or menopause in women. In case you’re suffering from acne without being in any of the above phases, then you’re suffering from Hormonal Acne. Hormonal acne affects adults, irrespective of their gender and age.
The symptoms of hormonal acne are somewhat similar to regular acne:
Usually blackheads and whiteheads are not painful, but in case they become inflamed, they can turn into lesions which can be sore and painful. Such lesions most commonly appear on the face, neck, shoulders, back and chest. The forehead and the cheeks are the areas that produce maximum sebum and this is where most lesions appear.
Acne or lesions are caused due to 4 reasons, and hormonal fluctuations are one of major reasons but there are many other reasons as well.
- As mentioned earlier, the production of certain hormones increases during puberty, pregnancy and menopause. The increased production of the hormone testosterone increases the production of sebum, which is the oily substance that gets secreted at the base of the hair follicles.
- The hair follicles, also known as pores, become clogged due to the excess sebum production. This becomes the perfect breeding grounds for bacteria.
- These clogged pores worsen due to bacterial infection.
- Our body’s immune system acts on the bacteria and this leads to inflammation.
Although all acne does not cause inflammation, pimples usually become inflamed.
Home Remedies to treat Hormonal Acne
Although there are various over the counter medicines to treat acne, natural treatments are most suitable for treating acne since they have no side effects. Here are some home remedies to treat acne-
- Tea Tree Oil: The anti-inflammatory properties of tea tree oil help to decrease the inflammation caused due to acne. It helps to fight bacteria, calms redness, and even helps to reduce acne scars. Tea tree oil should always be diluted before application on the skin.
- Green Tea: Drinking green tea can help to decrease the inflammation caused due to acne and clear the skin. Green tea contains tannins which work like an astringent on the skin and remove the excess oil from the skin. The use of cool green tea bags helps to decrease the growth of bacteria and tighten the skin.
- Lemons and Oranges: Both lemons and oranges are citric fruits and have a very high pH value. The citric acid present in these fruits helps to decrease the growth of bacteria and also ease skin irritation. Mix equal portions of lemon and orange juice and apply it on the affected area. Allow it to stay for 10 minutes and then wash off. Repeated applications help to reduce excess oil production and make the skin supple and tighter.
- Pomegranate and Tomato: Pomegranate is acidic in nature and so it helps to control excess oil production and helps maintain the pH levels of the kin. Tomatoes combat the growth of bacteria and improve the texture of the skin. A face mask prepared with tomato pulp and pomegranate juice can work wonders on skin affected by acne.
- Pineapples and Yogurt: Yogurt is known for its probiotics, which help to take care of dead skin cells on the upper layer of the skin. They also provide a protective acidic barrier on the skin which prevents viruses and other foreign particles from invading the skin. Pineapple, being acidic in nature, prevents the production of excess oil. Prepare a mask using the pulp of a pineapple and yoghurt and apply it on your face. Rinse with cold water once it is completely dry.
Dietary Modifications to Reduce Hormonal Acne
Research has shown that certain foods can aggravate acne and should be avoided. These include:
- Dairy products – cheese, milk, ice cream
- Sugary foods
- Red meats
- Refined carbohydrates such as pasta and bread
- Short grain white rice
- Snack foods such as popcorn, rice cakes and pretzels
- Instant cereals such as oatmeal
Certain foods that possess inflammation fighting properties are known to decrease acne. Foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and plant based foods can help to reduce acne. These include:
- Salmon fish
- Grass-fed beef
- Mustard seeds
- Pastured eggs
- Navy beans
Some studies also suggest that foods rich in antioxidants and dietary fibre can also help to get rid of acne.
In addition to the above information about hormonal acne, you might want to know more about it. Click here to access your definitive guide to hormonal acne