What Is Fungal Acne Vs Hormonal Acne
Fungal acne and hormonal acne are often confused with each other because both types of acne start in the hair follicles. Fungal acne occurs when excess yeast develops, whereas hormonal acne is caused by excess sebum. Fungal acne can result in whiteheads, itchiness and often becomes red, irritated and inflamed.
Hormonal Jawline Acne: Where Does It Come From
A common feature of hormonal acne is breakouts on the chin and jawline area. Unlike other types of acne, hormonal acne is characterized by bumps that are deeper than the surface . Deeper pimples like cysts are what Dr. Zenovia likes to call underground pimples because they are difficult to pop and express. Picking at cysts will only lead to scarring and more inflammation which leads to more pimples!
Does Hormonal Acne Go Away
If you have hormonal acne now, know this: Youre not doomed to live with it forever. All forms of acne, including hormonal acne, can improve over time as your body adjusts to hormonal or physiological changes, Dr. Rodney says. However, in many cases, its a chronic problem that will be tough to get rid of without personalized treatment.
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Other Things That Can Affect Your Skin
Genetics and skinAcne has been found to be highly hereditary. So if you have a family history of skin issues youre more likely to have skin problems.
Diet and skinEating lots of foods with a high glycemic index has been linked to acne. This is because high-GI foods food can affect your hormones. High-GI foods include white bread, cookies, cakes, and pizza.
The link between dairy and acne is weak but possible. So its important to monitor your own symptoms and see if dairy aggravates your skin. Keeping a food diary is a good idea.
Stress and skinWhen youre stressed your body produces more cortisol a stress hormone. High levels of cortisol can cause inflammation and occasionally cause inflammatory skin conditions like psoriasis.
Sleep and skin If you dont get enough sleep your body produces more cortisol leading to inflammation.
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Acne And The Menstrual Cycle
When high levels of androgens promote excess sebum production, the sebum can combine with dead skin cells from within the pore, causing a blockage . This blockage of the pore can trap all the excess sebum being produced and manifest as acne . These sebum filled pores are the ideal place for bacteria to liveâparticularly P. acnes, which loves to colonize these pores, and further worsen and causes inflammatory acne .
Acne is one of the most frequently reported skin ailments connected to your cycle . Period-related hormonal breakouts are very common in the perimenstrual phase .
The reasons for hormonal acne are still not clear, but there are some theories. Some researchers think that before the period starts, there is not enough estrogen to promote its âanti-sebumâ effects . Without high estrogen, androgens increase sebum production, which leads to increased pore clogging and a habitable environment for P. acnes. Other theories suggest that hormonal acne might be caused by a deficiency or imbalance of progesterone to estrogen ratios . More research is needed.
Women and people with cycles who have higher levels of androgens, such as people with polycystic ovarian syndrome , are more likely to have acne, as well as excess hair growth and female pattern hair loss . Trans men may also notice an increase in acne lesions during the first year of taking testosterone, but this should decrease after long term testosterone use .
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Endocrinal Evaluation In Patients With Suspected Hormonal Acne
Hormonal evaluation is not mandatory for those who experience short bouts of onset and offset or those who respond well to standard treatments. However, in the more resistant cases and for those who fail to respond to conventional therapies, endocrinal evaluation is an important tool to consider as well as in the following cases:8
It is important to remember that many patients with hormonal acne might not have a raised level of circulating testosterone in their blood and that some women with raised androgen levels can still have normal menstruation. This is primary because only a small portion of the testosterone is being free and able to bind to the androgen receptors to induce action, so unless free testosterone is measured separately, total testosterone level may still be normal in spite of obvious hyperandrogenism signs.28 Signs of hyperandrogenism despite normal levels of both total and free testosterone can be explained by the fact that there is an increased sensitivity of the receptors to androgen at the pilosebaceous unit or an increased activity of the 5-reductase enzyme resulting in overproduction of DHT, which is five times more potent than testosterone.29
How Can I Reduce My Risk Of Hormonal Acne
Though hormonal acne can be unavoidable, there are several things you can do to reduce your risk of getting breakouts:
- Make lifestyle changes to reduce stress, get better sleep and eat a healthy diet.
- Use skincare products that wont clog pores.
- Discuss treatment options with your healthcare provider for persistent acne.
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Are Levels Of Testosterone And Of Other Androgens Raised In Hormonal Acne
There is conflicting evidence on this though the majority of studies show that elevated androgen levels are are frequent.
A large study from 2013 showed that of 835 women with hormonal acne, 55% had elevated levels of androgens DHEA being the one most frequently elevated. A Turkish study from 2017 of 207 women showed 55% of women with acne had elevations in one androgen. Smaller studies from Brazil and Japan have also showed elevated levels of androgens in adult women with acne.
A Czech study from 2000 of 90 women with acne showed that 81% had an elevated level of at least one androgen. The severity of acne did not vary with the degree of elevation however. However a British study from 1989 showed no elevations in androgens in women with acne.
Our clinical impression is that some women do have elevated androgen levels and hormonal acne may be the only sign of this. Other signs include excessive facial and body hair, irregular periods and hair loss. However, a large number of women have normal levels of androgens and it is believed that these women may just be more sensitive to these androgens. This is the reason they get acne.
The bottom line is routine hormone blood tests may be normal in hormonal acne. Hypersensitivity of the skin means that anti-androgen treatment is still important. Also Testosterone and DHT can be produced in the skin and blood tests would not show if too much of these hormones is being produced in the skin in some people.
Non Prescribed And Prescription Creams Gels Lotions
Some of the non-prescribed and prescribed creams, gels and lotions can be good for treating chin acne. Generally, go for those that have retinoid since they can unclog your pores and ensure any antibiotics you are using will work well. Tazorac, Differin, or Retin-A are a few brands to give a try.
Also, for non-prescribed, go for products that have sulfur and sodium sulfacetamide and products that combine antimicrobial medications such as clindamycin with benzoyl peroxide.
Another product to try is Aczone. Aczonean anti-acne, anti-inflammatory gel thats great for those with sensitive or aging skin. Furthermore, it is good to apply a product containing the plant extract willow bark and antioxidants twice a day to fade marks and boost cell turnover.
Other good face care products to try include:
The product you use can either affect or help reduce zits on your chin. For instance, facial care products with salicylic acid as well as benzoyl peroxide might be helpful. When looking for face care products:
Finally, do not use an anti-acne wash, lotion and anti-aging creams at the same time as they might dry your skin. It is advisable to seek an opinion of a dermatologist first. Some ingredients in face care products such as cocoa butter, petrolatum, or shea butter cause acne breakouts since they clog pores and they should be avoided.
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Laboratory Tests In Patients With Suspected Hormonal Acne
For patients signs of hyperandrogenism, failure to respond to conventional therapies, and with irregular menses, endocrinal evaluation is required at the early menstrual phase . Other hormonal treatments such as oral contraceptives should be terminated and stopped 1 month before laboratory investigations to avoid false results.8
Do Foods Trigger Hormonal Acne
While specific foods arent known to contribute to acne directly, theres sufficient evidence to suggest that diet can influence your health and hormones.
Diets with a high glycemic index, for instance, cause blood sugar spikes which in turn increases insulin production. And increased insulin means increased androgens.
Whats more, studies have shown a correlation between diets high in processed and refined carbs and the severity of acne. Diets that avoid heavily processed carbohydrates and sugary beverages are thus helpful in preventing androgen production that can cause a cystic breakout.
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Keep Your Cell Phone Clean
Making sure your cell phone is clean. This is a small, simple change that can make a world of a difference. Like touching your face, cell phones are not the cause of acne, but they can potentially make acne worse due to the presence of bacteria on your mobile device, experts say.
Be sure to wipe down your phone daily to avoid unnecessary bacteria from getting onto your skin and contributing to cystic acne.
Hot Flashes And Night Sweats
One of the most common symptoms of perimenopause is hot flashes, which often coexists with night sweats. Almost 80 percent of people who are in perimenopause or transitioning into menopause have hot flashes. Also, most women who receive chemotherapy or undergo surgery to remove their ovaries will experience hot flashes.
Scientists know that hot flashes occur as a result of low estrogen levels. Each hot flash involves a sensation of heat that starts in the chest area and travels to the neck and the head. It can last for a few minutes and may cause sweating. Some women also develop a faster heart rate during hot flashes.
If a hot flash happens during sleep, they are called night sweats. Women who have night sweats often wake up in the morning feeling tired.
Some people experience redness along their neck and face during a hot flash. This is called a hot flush.
On average, each hot flash lasts for about three to four minutes. Hot flashes can occur for a few months to several years. In a few rare cases, some people had hot flashes for 10 years.
Other signs of hormonal imbalance include:
- Heavy or irregular periods, missed periods, frequent periods, or stopped periods
- Vaginal dryness and itching
- Weakened muscles
- Pain in the muscles, tenderness, and stiffness
- Pain and swelling in the joints
- Cancer treatments
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Otc And Prescription Medications
Chin pimples caused by oily skin or poor hygiene can usually be addressed with commercial products. These products contain active ingredients to reduce sebum production and inflammation and kill acne-causing bacteria.
Salicylic acid cleanser
Salicylic acid reduces both inflammation and sebum production in the skin. Its commonly found as an active ingredient in facial cleansers but is also available in higher concentrations as a spot treatment in the form of a gel or cream.
Benzoyl peroxide ointment
Benzoyl peroxide kills acne-causing bacteria by releasing oxygen inside clogged pores. Because of its mechanism of action, it does not cause bacterial resistance a problem associated with oral antibiotics.
Available in concentrations of 210% as a cream or lotion, benzoyl peroxide can be easily applied to a pimple on the chin as a spot treatment.
Benzoyl peroxide is most effective when used in tandem with another product such as salicylic acid that will help dry out pimples on the chin.
Adapalene is a retinoid, a derivative of vitamin A, available OTC at a low concentration and by prescription in concentrations up to 0.3%. It is available as a cream, lotion and gel, and is often used alongside other acne treatments to increase their penetration and efficacy.
Adapalene prevents the formation of microcomedonestiny blocked pores that eventually turn into full-fledged blemishesand helps reduce inflammation inactive lesions.
How To Know If You Have Hormonal Imbalance
If you think your hormones are ebbing and flowing beyond their normal fluctuations, you can start by examining your breakouts.
Specifically, it can help to look for patterns. If your acne pops up like clockwork at the same time each month, its probably due to the normal fluctuations in your hormones that we discussed above.
Signs of Hormonal Imbalance in Women
- Extreme mood swings
- Recurring yeast infections
Its time to get more in tune with our bodies. Recognizing these signs and keeping track of our cycle can warn us when things arent quite going with the flow.
But why does this imbalance end up showing on our skin?
What Does Acne On The Chin Mean
Adult acne, and specifically chin acne, are associated with hormonal fluctuations in both sexes. Mens testosterone levels change over the course of a day, while womens are linked to menstruation and thus, follow a monthly cycle.
Usually, hormonal acne doesnt mean anything is wrong with your health. However, if youre a woman with acne accompanied by other symptoms such as weight gain and an irregular period, it may be a sign of a hormonal disorder called polycystic ovarian syndrome .
The Major Factors In Hormone Belt Flare
The old adage ‘you are what you eat’ rings true for acne,” says Dr. Marmur. “If youre eating something thats not easy for you to digest, you could also have the stress response, which is the cortisol hormone.” This, she says, can trigger an pimples to pop up as well. “Also if youre eating foods that are high in soy youll be getting extra estrogen. If youre eating meats that are antibiotic fed meats or hormone fed meats, youll be ingesting those as well. Foods like chocolate, pasta, white bread, and rice can also be problematic, because they spike your blood sugar, which increases the production of insulin and can lead to oilier skin.
So what should you be munching on? “Foods high in antioxidants will reduce inflammation in the body which may help prevent acne, says Dr. Ross, who suggests choosing plant-based foods such as kale, strawberries, blueberries and artichokes that are high in antioxidants. Foods high in omega-3 fatty acids can help to reduce inflammation, and Vitamins A, E and zinc are also helpful.
There’s no “one size fits all” methodand not all progesterones are created equallyso you may have to tweak your regimen until you find something that works for you. “Your over the counter products are not taking away all of your hormonestheyre just balancing them so that the highs and lows of the hormone fluctuations are more balanced so that your skin doesnt fluctuate as well, says Dr. Marmur.
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How To Cure Or To Get Rid Them
Can I get rid of chin acne? What cures or treatments can I opt for? In general, treatment for mild breakouts may involve the use of topical cream products. Serious breakouts might need other treatments. Learn more on to get rid of hormonal acne using treatments, therapy and birth control pills.
Topical cures prescription antibiotics and creams
The first category of treatment involves use of topical antibiotics. Antibiotics will greatly help in fighting bacteria. Two approaches are available here. If you have a mild acne case then go for over the counter antibiotic medicines. However, be sure of your current health condition or ask your health care provider what antibiotics can work best for you.
The other treatment is to seek medical care so that you get prescription antibiotics. Antibiotics can be administered orally. Examples of oral antibiotics are:
- Cotrimoxazole such as Deprim,
- Dxycycline, limecyclines, monocyclines,
Use of prescription antibiotics may have side effects such as getting a dry skin. If that is the case ask your doctor to advise you on appropriate moisturisers to apply.
If you have blackheads or whiteheads around your chin you may need creams to apply. Creams also from the larger part of topical treatments. Examples are drugs that contain active retinoid ingredients such as Retin-A, Aczone, Accutane, Differin, etc.
NOTE: Accutane is not appropriate for women during pregnancy because it can come with side effects after its use.