Discover The Link Between Acne & Hormones

Ever present danger of Acne. Acne can strike at any time in your life, whether you are a child, a teenager, an adult or a senior citizen. At every stage, you can bet that hormones will have some part to play. You can probably count on having your own special tale of woe, depending on how badly you have been scarred by your encounter with acne.

So let us take a look at how hormones can affect acne in a variety circumstances. Believe it or not, even babies have not managed to escape the menace of acne. That sure does seem a shame considering they are not even able to make themselves understood. Acne in babies is caused by the transfer of maternal hormones to the baby through the placenta, which stimulates the secretion of oil in the skin.

Acne is also evident in children before they reach puberty. At this time, girls are more prone to the condition than boys, while they are more or less equally affected by acne through the adolescent years. In adulthood, it is women rather than men who suffer from acne more often. Teenagers and young adults make up the bulk of acne sufferers. All of these inclinations towards acne among the different age groups are dictated by variations of hormonal activity.

References to hormonal acne can actually be rather misleading because nearly all forms of acne are affected by erratic hormone levels. This is true in the case of both males and females. Although generally speaking, the layman tends to regard testosterone as a male hormone and estrogen and progesterone as female hormones, in fact both males have a combination of all three hormones.

The appearance of acne is mainly caused by fluctuating levels of testosterone. When the levels of these hormones are high, secretion by the sebaceous glands also increases. This in turn encourages the formation of acne.

Teenage acne woes. Then again, it is the adolescent years, when hormonal activity is high, that are most commonly associated with the appearance of acne. That is why acne is particularly prevalent among teenagers, whose skin tends to be greasy. Since males have a higher concentration of male hormones, the acne problem is more acute in teenage boys. This is also the reason why men who use anabolic steroids tend to have eruptions of acne on the torsos and faces.

Acne woes for women. As far as women are concerned, acne that is induced by hormonal activity is most often linked to the menstrual cycle, when levels of estrogen are at their highest. Increased levels of progesterone following ovulation result in increased secretion from the sebaceous glands, making the skin greasy, clogging pores and encouraging the formation of acne. Acne may even trouble women after menopause. At this time, while estrogen levels have begun to recede, testosterone levels are high.

Acne and hormonal changes. There are a few telltale signs that will indicate whether your acne is the result of hormonal changes. Acne that breaks out for the first time in adulthood is one such indicator. A menstrual cycle that tends to be irregular is another. Other pointers include a greasy appearance to the face, which is the result of excessive secretion from the sebaceous glands, and the growth of hair in odd parts of the body.

It is evident therefore that there is a clear link between hormonal activity and the appearance of acne. Even the appearance of acne in the last three months of pregnancy has been attributed to hormonal imbalance. The use of oral contraceptives to regulate the activity of both male and female hormones has been effective in slowing down the activity of the sebaceous glands. However, this is not generally considered a treatment option for men with acne.


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