Six simple ways to reduce acne



Relinquish the spa treatments
It may be hard if you’re a pamper addict but sometimes a facial can do more damage then good when you’re suffering with acne. Many beauty therapists are not equipped with the expert knowledge required with problem skin and may actually end up causing further breakouts. It is better to invest your money in a dermatology clinic where treatments such as Violet Light therapy are utilised. Violet Light treatment kills and removes acne bacteria and helps to reduce inflammation. Other treatments include Microdermabrasion which can unclog blocked pores and controlled chemical peels that use salicylic and lactic acid.

Consult the right expert
When suffering with acne it’s important to discuss the problem with the right experts who will be able to help. Your GP will be able to discuss medication but can also offer advice on contraception such as the contraceptive pill as this can often stabilise your hormones. There are a variety of types available and they can discuss the right one for you. It’s important to make sure your symptoms are fully assessed so any underlying medical conditions like Polycystic Ovaries Syndrome can be ruled out. If your acne is severe or really affecting your self esteem it may be worthwhile asking if you can be referred to a dermatologist. This is unlikely to be offered on the NHS unless your acne is very severe due to the cost but even one private session is worthwhile in finding guidance on how your routine affects your skin. Everything from your makeup routine and fitness habits can affect breakouts and a Dermatologist will be able to offer advice in how to overcome this.

Eat a regular diet
Whilst there is not a scientific link between greasy foods and acne, research suggests that excessive consumption of sugary and white carbohydrates contribute towards this. Sugary and white carbohydrates such as chocolate produce a protein called IGF-1 that stimulates the production of oil clogging your follicles. Whilst this may seem disappointing you shouldn’t worry as combining small treats like chocolate with a healthy balanced diet of meat, fruit and vegetables will help to reduce your chance of causing more spots.

Take supplements
By taking supplements such as magnesium, vitamin B5 and the amino acid L-theanine you help to combat stress. Including a daily multi vitamin in your daily routine, especially those that contain Vitamin C and Zinc, will help to heal scars and promote skin health. Essential fatty acids can help to balance your skin’s oil production so look for a multi vitamin that contains Omega-3 fish oil or flaxseed supplement.

Don’t suffer alone
If your skin is making you really unhappy the best way to tackle it is to seek cognitive behavioural therapy (“CBT”). CBT teaches you to challenge the way you think, and how others see you, addressing your issues of self criticism that is common when suffering from skin conditions such as acne. Find a therapist at itsgoodtotalk.org.uk or plusguidance.com for online counselling.

Make time for you
Making time for relaxation and me times helps to low your stress levels which in turn will reduce surges of hormones. The reduction in hormones will have a positive effect on your skin calming any breakouts. Try to spend five minutes every day sitting or lying somewhere quiet with your eyes closed, imagine you’re somewhere you love such as a sun kissed beach, and try to remember how good it made you feel. If you’re in a situation such as a social event where you feel out of your depth and uncomfortable try to focus on the person you’re speaking to. Concentrate on what they’re wearing and saying, force yourself to ask them questions which will put you out of your inner critic.

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