As with many forms of acne you will find that it is not only the face area that suffers from oily skin and pore blockages. There are other areas of the body where acne may occur without warning and may be harder to notice than usual. With the same main root problem that other forms of skin conditions are triggered by, understanding what causes back acne is the key to solving your acne issues not only in the problem area, but also elsewhere about the body as you find the solution that works best for you.
Main Causes of Back Acne
The main causes of back acne tend to be the same cause of other acne located elsewhere on the body. An oily substance known as sebum is slowly secreted from the sebaceous glands that are located just under the skin. During periods of hormonal change, the glands are working overtime and producing excessive amounts of sebum. Such periods of hormonal change or imbalance occur at various times in our lives. Puberty in both boys and girls is the most common, but also in adults in periods such as during menstruation and pregnancy in women where hormone levels are often vastly changed, especially during the first three months of pregnancy.
When the oily sebum fluid is released from the sebaceous glands through the pores of the skin, sometimes these pores can become blocked and therefore there is a build-up of fluid just under the skin which causes a bump to form. Depending on the blockage, blackheads (partial blockage) or whiteheads (full blockage) form. Zits, pustules, and comedones can also be formed and when you put it all together, you have an acne outbreak.
So then why the back? Why is the back a problem area for acne? There is, of course, a scientific reason and that is the fact that the back is one of those areas that has more sebaceous glands per square inch than most other areas of the body. During heavy periods of sebum production, a lot of oil is secreted through the pores on the upper back. Since this is a hard part of the body to clean effectively, it makes sense that pores can get easily blocked and cause an acne outbreak. Other factors that contribute to the causes of back acne are pressure and friction. Back packs, purses, athletic equipment and pads, and other objects that we carry on our backs can provide the exact type of pressure and friction that irritate and inflame minor acne into a more serious outbreak. Teenage boys playing sports such as football or lacrosse are the quintessential example of this scenario. Heavy oil production, daily use of shoulder pads, and a lot of sweat. What a perfect place for the formation of acne.
How to Get Rid of Back Acne
There is a vast number of products and soaps designed specifically for dealing with acne. Most of these products are designed to be used on the face, but the concept is the same. They typically contain a variety of vitamins and nutrients that can have a drastic effect on your overall skincare in general. You will be able to use these products on your back just like a regular soap or shower gel. Under normal circumstances, the skin on your back is a lot less sensitive as the skin on your face. It can take a bit more scrubbing and roughing up. However, when you have an acne outbreak, the area is much more sensitive. Remember, acne can be irritated and inflamed by pressure and friction. So a rough heavy scrubbing could make the situation worse. Instead, gently scrubbing the infected area with a soft cloth and gentle cleanser is a lot more effective.
Conversely, if you do not have a current outbreak and the idea is to clean out the pores and reduce the chance of acne forming, a rough scrub might be just what is needed. There are many products available on the market these days that offer gentle abrasive scrubs in the form of shower gel type liquids, that contain natural ingredients such as salts and vitamins. These can give a rougher clean and make sure that the pores in your skin are fully cleansed and unclogged.
With the scrubs often coming in smaller bottles and designed as a facial scrub, you may find that combining the scrubs with your general purpose shower gel can have the same effect on other parts of the body. These gentle abrasive types of scrub are highly recommended by doctors and dermatologists as a great way to cleanse the skin on any part of the body and will stave off future outbreaks of acne, especially back acne.
Partner Up to Reduce Causes of Back Acne
As a difficult area to view and take care of, you may find that you will need a partner to help check the results of your acne cleaning regime. It will also be important to make sure that these parts of your back are not suffering from large infections or more serious forms of acne. This could mean a simple trip to the doctor or a local dermatologist who can say in a single sentence, after taking a brief glance, what type and how bad your acne can be. If that is not an option, get a friend or loved one to take look. Take some pictures and compare them to those online to determine the extent and severity of the acne. Sequential pictures also help in keeping track of treatment progress.
Many people decide to treat their acne at home and save some embarrassment they might feel in showing their acne and other skin conditions to other people. However, it must be understood that acne is one of the most, if not the most, common form of skin disorder that occurs across the nation, in teenagers and adults alike. Many healthcare representatives will be able to point you in the direction of the best products on the market to help with your acne. So make sure you consult a doctor or dermatologist. It is the best way to fight the battle of acne, in any of its forms, and to have your skin clear, cleansed and healthy for years to come.