Acne is a common skin condition that is caused by inflammation of the hair follicle. In a normal follicle, dead skin cells are continually being shed from the inside of the pore and pushed up to the service of the skin. During a breakout, this normal shedding process is impaired causing a blockage of the follicle. In this low oxygen environment, the P. Acne virus can thrive and build up in the follicles. In more severe cases, the pressure builds up in the follicle, the walls will break down and the contents will spread into the surrounding skin. This bacteria and sebum coupled with the immune system response can create inflammatory acne.
Acne is separated into 4 grades, most commonly found on the face, neck, back and chest.
Grade 1 – The mildest form of acne, consists of blackheads and small pimples on the skin.
Grade 2 – A moderate form of acne, blackheads, whiteheads, inflammation, redness, papules and pustules will occur on the skin. Scarring is possible in this stage.
Grade 3 – Similar to Grade 2 but consists of swelling, whiteheads and scarring is common.
Grade 4 – The most severe grade of acne. It can cause much more inflammation, cysts, scarring and large pustules. Scarring is very common in this stage and anyone suffering from this grade of acne should be seen by a dermatologist before proceeding with any treatment.