Tight Clothing Or A Heavy Backpack Could Also Be The Culprit
“Tight clothing mixed with friction and excess moisture, such as sweat, can lead to the development of acne. The combination of friction, heat, and covered skin may result in the development of a form of acne called acne mechanica. The friction can irritate the skin and disrupt the surface, which can clog the pores with dead skin cells and lead to inflammation,” Dr. Jeremy Fenton of Schweiger Dermatology Group in NYC told Byrdie. “In my case, this is a perfect explanation, since the super-hot NYC summer weather was causing me to sweat, which, coupled with rubbing bra straps, led to a spattering of breakouts.
To prevent acne mechanica on you back, make sure your clothing and undergarments aren’t too tight and try not to carry heavy loads in backpacks or purses for extended periods of time. Wearing a clean cotton t-shirt beneath your regular clothes or sports uniform can also help keep your skin protected.
Undergo Laser Or Light Therapy
Medical spas and dermatologists offer a slew of laser and light treatments geared specifically at clearing the skin. Though it takes time to see results and multiple treatments are usually needed, infrared lights and blue and red light devices can help heal and clear breakouts. Even better, they can target scars in addition to current and future breakouts. “Your board-certified dermatologist can help you find the right laser for the type of scars you have on your back,” says Nazarian. Red scars, black scars, or bumpy scars are all treated differently.
Other treatments, such as those utilizing LED lights, can work to improve the overall texture of the skin. “LED red light is an anti-inflammatory light that improves circulation and collagen formation, and may improve the appearance of acne scars with continued use,” suggests Nazarian.
How Do You Treat Back And Chest Acne
If youre experiencing severe body acne with deep, painful cysts, its best to partner with a dermatologist so you can develop a unique plan for ongoing care. That being said, for mild to moderate body acne, some of the basic treatments used to treat acne on the face can be used for the back and chest. Heres how to get rid of body acne for good:
1. Use an acne cleanser
While any gentle soap or body wash can help remove dirt and oils, there are specific products geared toward fighting body acne breakouts. Dr. Thompson suggests starting with products that include benzoyl peroxide.
Normally, I favor milder benzoyl peroxide washes as stronger washes can cause more dryness and skin irritation for the face. Fortunately, the trunk tends to be less sensitive with treatment, Dr. Thompson said.
2. Try a topical retinoid
Whether a prescription agent or over-the-count adapalene gel, this is another great option for treating body acne. Products like Differin gel and Retin-A play a crucial role in the treatment of acne by regulating skin cell turnover and reducing inflammation deep in the skin to not only clear but prevent future pimples.
3. Remember sun protection
4. Develop good workout habits
Its great to put in the time for workouts, but dont hang out too long in your sweaty clothes. Make sure you shower and change clothes right after working outor doing anything that gets you sweaty.
5. Resist the urge to pop, pick or scrub acne
6. Modify your diet
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Acne Scar Removal With Laser Skin Treatments
Skin care clinics and dermatologists across the country offer laser skin treatments for acne scar removal, but is it worth it? The best way to determine which laser acne scar treatment is right for you is to get different professional opinions about which type is best for your skin, and compare pricing, expected recovery time and reviews. Here’s how a few laser treatments work for acne scar removal:
What Is Back Acne
Back acne is acne that develops on your back. It causes pimples that appear as red bumps, whiteheads or blackheads. These zits can be unsightly, annoying and painful.
Acne happens when oil, dirt, dead skin cells and bacteria clog your skins pores. Back acne usually results when sweat gets trapped under a shirt or athletic gear during exercise or strenuous activity. Clothing rubs against your sweaty skin, which leads to zits or makes them worse.
Several over-the-counter and prescription treatments can clear up back acne. But it may take a few months for skin to clear.
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What Causes Shoulder And Back Acne
Like face acne, there are several reasons why pimples and bumps can develop on the back and shoulders. Acne symptoms can vary by cause. Determining the source of your acne is an important step in back and shoulder acne treatment.
- Acne Mechanica: This is one of the most common types of acne to develop on the shoulders and back. Caused by friction, acne mechanica is typically the result of ill-fitting clothing, exercise, and athletic apparel, but it can also be the result of something as simple as an improperly fitting backpack. If your acne is seasonal, or if it appears after physical activity, this may be the cause of your shoulder and back acne.
- Acne Vulgaris: This is another common form of acne that frequently develops on the back and shoulders. Also known as hormonal acne, these lesions appear when the skin produces too much sebum, or oil, which can lead to clogged hair follicles. This type of acne responds well to at-home treatment, but it can become painful and widespread, especially on the back. If youre struggling to treat your acne vulgaris, a dermatologist can provide relief.
- Keratosis Pilaris: While not itself acne, keratosis pilaris can sometimes look like pimples. These bumps appear in patches across the shoulders, back, and upper arms. They are a result of keratin overproduction. The condition is not painful, but it can be unsightly when it appears in large swathes across the body. Most keratosis pilaris treatment is very effective.
What Triggers Back Acne
As mentioned, two of the biggest players that determine how prone you are to bacne are your genetics and hormones. If a close relative, such as your parents or siblings, are prone to acne, then you might be acne-prone too, according to the American Academy of Dermatology 7. This could be because genes influence the processes that affect your skin, such as the inflammatory response and how sebaceous glands function8.
Meanwhile, fluctuating hormone levels can be a contributing factor to bacne flare-ups. The most common pattern is for a flare to happen 7 to 10 days before the onset of bleeding and subside once bleeding starts, Hadley King, M.D.9, clinical instructor of dermatology at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University in New York, tells SELF. This is because theres a mid-cycle rise in progesterone that stimulates the production of sebum. Androgens like testosterone also stimulate sebum production during this time. The potential result? Oily skin, clogged pores and a new round of bacne10.
You might notice bacne flareups during other hormonal changes too . Hormone-related conditions, such as polycystic ovary syndrome, can also spur bacne thanks to the intense hormonal shifts it can cause.
An uptick in back acne can also be a side effect of certain medications, including drugs that contain corticosteroids, testosterone, or lithium, according to the Mayo Clinic.
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Why Does Acne Occur On The Back
Like the chest and face, the back has a high density of sebaceous glands. These produce sebum, a waxy substance that keeps the skin healthy.
Sebaceous glands are attached to hair follicles, or pores. If sebum or dead skin cells clog a pore, it can cause a blockage. This blockage may lead to inflammation or trap bacteria in the pore. This is how acne lesions develop.
A type of yeast, Malassezia, can also cause lesions that look similar to acne. The yeast tends to overgrow in humid, sweaty environments. Because the back is often covered by clothing, backpacks, slings, and other thing, it can be an ideal environment for this microbe. If the yeast gets into the hair follicles, it can cause a condition known as pityrosporum folliculitis. And if antibacterial treatments have not worked for back acne, the person may have pityrosporum folliculitis instead.
There are several ways to approach back acne, including:
How To Treat Acne Scarring
Ideally, the best way to treat acne scars is to be proactive and prevent them from forming in the first place. You can accomplish this by seeking treatment for your acne early. Avoid picking or popping your acne cysts, which increases the risk of infection and scarring. Try to wash your face each evening, and after sweating, with a gentle cleansernever scrub your face. You should also wear sunscreen anytime you are in the sun.
Despite all of these measures, some people still end up with acne scars. Fortunately, several treatments can help but may require more than one session to achieve optimal results.
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What Are The Risk Factors For Developing Acne
Myths about what contributes to acne are quite common. Many people believe that foods such as chocolate or French fries will contribute to acne. While theres no scientific support for these claims, there are certain risk factors for developing acne. These include:
- hormonal changes caused by puberty or pregnancy
- certain medications, such as certain birth control pills or corticosteroids
- a diet high in refined sugars or carbohydrates, such as bread and chips
- having parents who had acne
People are most at risk for developing acne during puberty. During this time, your body undergoes hormonal changes. These changes can trigger oil production, leading to an increased risk of acne. Hormonal acne related to puberty usually subsides, or at least improves when you reach adulthood.
Cleanse With The Appropriate Ph
A cleanser with the appropriate potential Hydrogen level, which refers to the amount of acid in a substance, is what you should clean your back with. The pH scale ranges from one to 14, and, according to Penford, you should look for a soap which has a pH in line with your skin, around 5.5. The lower numbers are acidic, while the upper levels are considered alkaline, or non-acidic.
A wash like Sebamed is a good option, as it creates a mild lather that will cleanse without stripping the skin. For even further penetration, keep the cleanser on your back for at least five minutes, almost like you would with a mask for your face.
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Make Your Own Natural Remedy
Another way to get rid of your pimples is to try making your own all-natural at-home remedy using ingredients you already have in your cupboard, such as apple cider vinegar or toothpaste. Later in our guide, we outline the specific steps you can take to make these easy zit treatments.
Now that you have a quick peek at how to get rid of pimples, it’s time to discover more about types of acne and potential causes for your breakouts.
How Can I Treat Back Acne
You can treat mild back acne at home. You should:
- Avoid popping or squeezing the pimples: You can damage your skin by popping zits. Squeezing or popping them can also lead to acne scars, which can be severe. Picking at a zit can also lead to an infected pimple.
- Keep your skin clean: Use an oil-free body wash thats noncomedogenic, which means it wont clog your pores. Shower and change into clean clothes after exercise. Resist the urge to scrub your skin with harsh cleansers. Scrubbing can make acne worse.
- Try topical creams, gels and cleansers: Benzoyl peroxide products can clear up back acne. When using a benzoyl peroxide cleanser, allow the medicine to stay on the pimples for up to five minutes before rinsing it off. You may also try a retinoid gel or an acne sticker that releases salicylic acid medication into the zit over several hours.
- Use clean linens: Its important to use clean towels, sheets and pillowcases so bacteria dont build up. Try to wash your sheets and towels at least once a week.
If back acne lingers or keeps coming back, see your dermatologist. They may recommend other prescription skin care products to treat severe acne. Or you may need antibiotics or other oral medications.
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Symptoms Of Acne On The Back And Shoulders
Most people with acne see lesions on the face, but many will also experience shoulder and back acne symptoms. These areas develop acne for a variety of reasons. Often covered by clothing, they can be susceptible to friction, heat, and sweat, all of which can cause acne lesions. Like facial acne, a number of factors can predispose a person to developing shoulder or back acne, but lifestyle factors are typically the driving force behind these lesions. Tight-fitting clothes, insufficient hygiene, and picking at pimples can all lead to the development of severe acne.
Shoulder and back acne do not always require a visit to the dermatologist. That said, you should consider making an appointment if the lesions are widespread, painful, and/or chronic. Our Minneapolis-area clinics are uniquely equipped to help diagnose and treat your acne, no matter its location or severity. If youre interested in visiting one of our offices for a consultation, try tracking the location of your acne in the days and weeks prior to the visit. This can help use better determine the acnes cause and severity.
How To Treat Back Acne
You dont need a medical degree to tackle bacne, because the treatment for regular acne, folliculitis, and acne mechanica are pretty much the same. The same ingredients that help acne on your face, like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide, can help on body acne, too. Keeping the area clean and exfoliated is a given as well.
As with most things, prevention is far more effective than treatment, Finney says. Always make sure to shower as quickly as possible after working out and change into dry clothes to prevent sweat from sticking around on your skin . Keep using skincare products, like body washes and exfoliators, even after your bacne has cleared up to keep it from coming back. Acne-focused skincare can work wonders on mild to moderate cases of bacne, but if you have severe outbreaks or notice that its not going away despite treatment, see a dermatologist. There might be underlying issues like hormones or diet at play. But for now, start with these 17 best back acne treatments to help get rid of annoying bacne and prevent it in the future.
Dexterity issues be damned, a spray containing salicylic acid can help you treat hard-to-reach areas like your mid-back or between your shoulder blades. This version is a leave-on treatment, which means you spray it on after your shower and let it go to work without washing it off.
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Cystic Acne Needs Extensive Treatment
Cystic acne can become chronic even if the disease in its early stages. If are one of those who delay treatment thinking that the disease will go away on its own, please know that this will not work with cystic acne.
If you dont seek treatment for cysts, they will lodge even deeper into your skin and you will need a surgery to get them removed.
You will also need a heavy dose of antibiotics and vitamin A. These antibiotics are usually mixed with creams that have Benzoyl peroxide in them.
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Wash Your Face With Acne Soap
Washing your face with regular soap isn’t enough to make your breakouts better. The best face wash for acne is effective at removing oil and dirt, but still gentle enough to use regularly without overdrying your skin. Look for topical acne medication ingredients salicylic acid and/or benzoyl peroxide in your face wash and use gentle, nonabrasive cleansing techniques.
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What Can I Expect If I Have Back Acne
Most of the time, back acne gets better with at-home treatments. If these pimples dont respond to over-the-counter products, dermatologists can treat severe back acne with prescription medications.
Depending on how many zits you have on your back, you may need to try different types of treatments. It might take several weeks for them to clear up. Your healthcare provider may recommend a combination of medications to get the results you want.
How To Get Rid Of Back Acne
Back acne is a potentially embarrassing and sometimes painful condition where clogged hair follicles on the back cause pimples and blackheads. Back acne can be caused by the same factors as other types of acne: diet, hormones, certain medications, genetics or any combination thereof. But when you’re considering how to get rid of back acne, also remember that most people have their back covered the majority of the day. The clothing we wear matters, and the way in which we wash the skin on our back is key for clear skin, the whole body over. Learn more about common back acne causes, the best acne products for your body, and how to prevent acne on the back from returning in this section.
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