Health Watch — Summer Skin: Acne

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications  and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about how summer can affect your skin. For many teens, this may be a time when acne flares up, and what you do to fight it may actually make matters worse.

Dr. Erin Welch, a dermatologist at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says teens should resist the impulse to scrub their skin. Acne is caused by an increase in oil production, not by dirt. Too much scrubbing and washing will irritate skin and make the problem worse. Instead, wash twice a day with a cleanser containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. These products keep pores from clogging and kill the bacteria in pores that cause pimples. If acne continues to be a problem, a dermatologist can prescribe stronger treatments. Avoid picking at or popping pimples, which can cause scarring.



August 2007

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