How to Treat Back Acne
Acne is not limited to the face, it can appear anywhere on the body that has hair follicles including your back, chest and shoulders. 60% of acne suffers are inflicted with back acne and it is usually a sign that their acne is severe.
The causes of back acne are the same as any other form of acne. The back is covered with sebaceous glands which produce sebum oil. Sebum oil is a substance that together with dead skin cells and bacteria can clog up the hair follicles on your back. A blocked follicle will eventually burst and become an acne lesion.
Just like facial acne there are many types of acne which can develop on the back:
- Blackheads: These occur when blocked pores are open on the surface of your skin. They turn black due to the reaction of sebum oil with air not because of dirt.
- Whiteheads: Whiteheads form when blocked pores stay closed under the skin and forms a small white bump.
- Papules: These are acne lesions that look like small pink bumps on the skin.
- Nodules: This is an acne lesion which has developed below the surface of the skin; they can harden and become big and painful.
- Pustules: This is what is commonly known as a pimple or zit, it is a yellow pus-filled papule.
- Cysts: This is a large pus-filled lesion that is normally very painful and can result in scars.
Treat your back acne:
It is hard to totally prevent any kind of acne as the factors which control it, such as hormones and genetics, are not within your control. However, there are a few steps you can take to help reduce the chances of developing back acne and there is acne treatment available which will both help clear up any outbreaks and prevent more acne developing.
- Exfoliate: One key to solving back and body acne is to gently and consistently exfoliate the acne-prone areas. We recommend using a high quality micro-fiber like the Exposed Derm-X Cloth and Derm-X Body Cloth.
- Kill the Bacteria: The best way to kill acne bacteria is with a clinical grade Benzoyl Peroxide gel such as the Exposed Acne Treatment Serum. This serum not only has micronized, clinical grade Benzoyl Peroxide but Tea Tree + Green Tea Extract to improve effectiveness.
Avoiding Back Acne: First avoid taking any drugs that contain androgens (male sex hormones) or lithium. They are both known to increase the chance of developing acne. If you are taking these then consult your doctor about alternatives.
Be careful about which skin products you use. Try to avoid anything that is oil based, these can cause your acne to flare up. It is also advisable to seek out products labelled ‘non-comedogenic’ which means that they don’t cause blackheads. Another thing to consider is products which may dry your skin, if the skin is too dry then the sebaceous glands go into over drive and will produce an excess of sebum oil.
You should also try not to put too much pressure on your back. Try to avoid carrying a backpack or any sports equipment. If that isn’t possible then try wearing a clean t-shirt underneath. Prolonged pressure and friction can cause your back to erupt in acne mechanica.
It is also important to make sure that your clothing is always clean. Dirty clothing will transfer dirt onto your back and lead to clogged pores and further irritation of existing acne.
There are effective treatments around for those that suffer from back acne. You can buy various over-the-counter products which help to control mild flare-ups. These treatments contain ingredients such as benzoyl peroxide, resorcinol, salicylic acid, and sulphur.
More importantly, you should be careful to always look after your skin. Make sure you wash it carefully with a gentle cleanser, shower after exercising and keep your hair clean. Also, avoid picking at your acne and don’t expose it to the sun for prolonged periods.
If you are still having problems then you should consult a dermatologist. The specialist will be able to examine your acne and prescribe you any medication should you need it.