Acne.

Everything you need to know.

Acne is one of the most common skin conditions in the UK which affects most people at some point in their lives, however, severity and longevity of the condition varies. Acne is an inflammatory skin condition which leads to oily skin and the development of spots, including blackheads and whiteheads, on the skin. For many, acne only lasts for a short time during puberty when hormone levels are changing, however, for some, the effects of acne last much longer and can bring pain, scarring, and embarrassment.

Alternative names: acne vulgaris, acne rosacea, nodulocystic acne, folliculitis, cysts, pimples, boils, furuncles, blemishes, spots, zits, blackheads, whiteheads, comedones.

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What causes acne?

Acne is caused by a combination of overactive grease-glands, hormones, pore blockage and bacterial overgrowth, which all commonly start during puberty. Acne is common in teenagers and young adults and, for most people, symptoms will be experienced on and off for years up until the 20s. Hormonal changes later in life such as pregnancy can also cause acne, and it is known to be an hereditary condition. As with most skin conditions, acne can affect your confidence and contribute to low self-esteem, but it can also leave scarring, making it vital to treat in those more severe cases or if skin healing is not so good.

What are the symptoms of acne?

The main symptom of acne is the appearance of a large volume of spots on the skin. Acne can develop on the face, back and chest and is a combination of blackheads, inflamed spots, cysts and pustules. In some severe instances, the scalp, armpits and groin can also be affected. More severe acne can leave scarring which can be pit-like, crater-like or bumpy. To avoid scarring, it is vital to treat acne before this stage.

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What treatments for acne are available at Stratum Dermatology Clinics?

We offer a range of acne treatments specifically for those who suffer from acne or acne scars but as it is a complex condition with varying levels of severity, our Dermatologists will advise you on the most appropriate treatment plan for you during your consultation.

Acne usually gets better over a year or two, so the first line of treatment is to simply suppress the inflammation until the acne disappears. This treatment might involve lotions or tablets such as topical retinoids, oral or topical antibiotics or hormone suppression in the form of a contraceptive pill (for females only). However, acne that is very disfiguring, scarring or long-standing, when it could be classed as more severe, can often require stronger treatment.

We will often recommend a staged approach over a period of time where each stage will produce some improvement and together they will produce a worthwhile, sustained improvement. Your consultant will discuss with you the benefits and potential side effects of each treatment that might be suitable for you, enabling a joint decision about how to care for your skin is reached.

Acne treatments are available in :

Please click on each clinic to find out more about acne treatments offered in each clinic

I am so pleased that I chose to treat my acne at Stratum. The procedure was quick, easy and painless and my skin is now perfectly clear - I feel a million times more confident!

A patientHad microdermabrasion treatment

Why Stratum Dermatology Clinics?

Acne is one of the most common skin conditions in the UK, and we know how much acne and acne scars can damage self-confidence. We pride ourselves on our successful and comprehensive range of treatments where people have the ability to choose what’s best for them and gain that confidence back.

We work with leading experts in the field of dermatology to ensure you have the best experience and treatment. Stratum clinics are regulated by the Care Quality Commission, are part of the British Association of Dermatologists and are top rated by patients on Doctify.

Frequently asked questions

How long does acne last?

Acne usually gets better over a year or two, so the first line of treatment is to simply suppress the inflammation until the acne disappears naturally. Treatment might involve lotions or tablets such as antibiotics or hormone suppression in the form of a contraceptive pill (for females only).

However, acne that is very disfiguring, scarring or long-standing is classed as severe, and requires stronger treatment. There are drugs that offer a good chance of a cure for acne.

Our Acne Dermatologists can offer effective, specialist acne treatment to patients to help cure or control their disease.

What can I do if I have acne?

Consultant dermatologists have years of experience in the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of acne. An appointment with one of our trusted experts is likely to be the most effective way to treat your acne. Sadly, acne cannot yet be cured, but it can be controlled with treatment.

Who's affected?

Acne is very common in teenagers and younger adults. About 80% of the UK population between 11 and 30 are affected by acne. Acne is most common in girls from the ages of 14 to 17, and in boys from the ages of 16 to 19.

Most people have acne on and off for several years before their symptoms start to improve as they get older. Acne often disappears when a person is in their mid-20s. In some cases, acne can continue into adult life. About 3% of adults have acne over the age of 35.

Is acne caused by poor hygiene?

No. Poor hygiene doesn’t cause acne. Cleansing your skin daily and exfoliating weekly can help prevent pores from becoming clogged, this approach is useful for both people with and without acne.

Is acne hereditary?

Yes, acne is known to run in families, so if your mother and father suffered with acne, you are more likely to.

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