Acne is a disorder of the hair follicles and sebaceous glands. Hair follicles are
the areas around the base or root of each hair. Sebaceous glands are the tiny glands
that release oil (sebum) into the hair follicles. The sebum moistens the skin and
hair. The sebum and hair get to the skin surface through tiny holes called pores.
Acne is very common. Most children and young adults between ages 11 and 30 will have
acne at some point. Acne most often begins in puberty. But it can happen at any age. There
are different types of acne that affect newborns, infants, younger children, and adults.
Acne may occur when the pores get
clogged with dead skin cells and oil. Bacteria that are normally on the skin may also
get into the clogged pore. Acne comes in several types. One type is a comedone. This
a plug of sebum in the hair follicle. They are either closed whiteheads or open
blackheads. These are not inflamed or infected.
Inflamed acne causes red, painful bumps or sores. The sores may be infected with bacteria.
This type of acne includes:
Pustule. Bacteria cause the hair follicle to be inflamed. Pustules are closer to the skin
Papule. The wall of the hair follicle gets irritated. Papules are deeper in the skin.
Nodule. These are larger, deeper, and more solid.
Cyst. This is a nodule with pus.