Adult Acne

Causes: You may wonder why your condition persists after using every exfoliant, facial toner, and skin treatment on the market. Although the precise reason for acne in adults remains unknown, current research is finding that acne is caused when bacteria multiply excessively within the hair follicle, an oil-releasing blockage develops from the sebaceous gland, or enlarged sebaceous oil glands yield the overproduction of oil.  

Adult acne is most often caused by genetic and hormonal changes. Contributing factors can include side effects from certain medications, cosmetic products with high oil contents, excessive sweating, stress, pregnancy, and menopause. 

Blockages of bacteria and oil can build, leading to adult acne problems including pimples, inflammation, cysts, and scarring. Adult acne most often appears on the face; however, it can appear on the arms, legs, buttocks, and torso. 

Adult acne can be physically painful and it can interfere with everyday life. Adults who are concerned about the first impression they make with others will be especially interested in facial acne treatments and remedies. 

Treatments:The appropriate treatment for acne varies depending on the individual and the doctor. But there's more than medicine to treating adult acne. A multifaceted approach of treatments, behaviors, and diet is often most effective.  

Self Help: Consult your doctor about hormonal changes.Protect skin from pollution with toners and moisturizers.Limit exposure to high humidity.Do not touch or scrub your face or the blemishes on your skin.Do not wear apparel that is tight on the face or skin, including tight collars or helmets.Follow a daily skincare regimen.Avoid exposure to sun and excessive cold.Select non-oily cosmetic products.Eat a well-balanced diet. 


  • microdermabrasion
  • chemical peels
  • laser skin resurfacing (for acne scars)
  • laser scar removal (for deeper acne marks on the face) 

Dermatologists, gynecologists, and other medical specialists may have extensive experience with acne treatment. They may prescribe a variety of treatments depending on their field: 

A gynecologist may prescribe hormones or birth control to level unbalanced hormones.  A dermatologist may recommend a topical ointment or oral medication to decrease inflammation and prevent the spread of acne.The dermatologist may also develop a specific daily skincare regimen for acne management. 

Questions: Review the physician's credentials, education, type of certification held, training, and experience in performing the specific treatment.View before-and-after photos of patients who received different types of acne treatment.Ask questions about the recommended medication, such as possible side effects or interactions with other drugs you are taking.Ask the treatment provider to estimate the number of treatments required to achieve and maintain optimal results. Investigate all the options available to you, including an integrated treatment plan. Your doctor should be able to answer your questions and help you create the best treatment plan for your condition.