How Did I Get Adult Acne?

While acne is most commonly associated with teens, more and more adults are beginning to suffer from it later in life. Whereas acne was once considered a “coming of age” for teens, there are numerous reasons someone may have to deal with adult acne. Let’s take a quick look at this skin condition and its causes.

What is Acne?

By definition, acne is a disease. This “disease” is a genetic predisposition and involves the hair and sebaceous follicles. Approximately 75 percent of children that have parents that have had acne are likely to have it themselves.

Sebum is produced in the sebaceous gland. This secretion is a complex mixture of lipids. The secretion normally travels up the sebaceous follicle to the hair follicle and then to the surface of the skin. In simpler terms, a gland below the skin secretes oil that is used to lubricate your hair and skin.

The pore can become plugged, usually due to an excess of oil and/or dead skin cells. When the pore is plugged, you will usually see an inflammation (pimple) with a white center (whitehead). The “plug” may also open and come to the surface with a dark appearance (blackhead).

Why Do Adults Get Acne?

The reality of today is that are our lives are very stressful. Stress has long been a trigger for acne and is one reason why adults are experiencing acne long after they think their “acne” days are over, especially women. Today, women have a much more active role in the home and business world. Whereas women were once expected to stay home, they are now breadwinners for the family and still have to deal with the stress of running household. This added stress can trigger an acne outbreak.

Another reason for an outbreak may be skin care products, especially if someone is using products not meant for their specific skin type. These products may actually irritate the skin and when combined with stress, create the ultimate breeding ground for adult acne.

Something else to consider is how someone acts when he or she starts to see the acne developing. Now he or she is “stressing” out over the acne, causing a hormonal reaction that causes even more sebum to be produced, creating an even worse case of acne.

To properly treat adult acne, you must first recognize why this is happening. Do you simply need skin care products to better clean your skin or are you overly stressed and need to deal with real life problems? Once the cause of the acne has been pinpointed, you will be better able to address it and treat your adult acne.


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