There’s nothing good about Acne! It can be red, painful, swollen, pus or water filled and annoying in many ways than one, especially when it decides to pop out on a supposedly good day and you have to start looking for a fashion accessory to clothing article to make you feel good even when you don’t feel good. Acne occurs mostly on the face, but it can occur in so many other places and one of such is the back. Back acne also known as bacne or truncal acne, can be frustrating because of its location which makes it difficult for you to take care effectively all by yourself. There’s no cause for alarm though as it is possible to get rid of Back Acne once and for all and enjoy the beautiful and flawless skin that you were created with!
For starters, the causes of back acne are basically the same as that of acne itself. It is characterized by whiteheads, blackheads and pimples and may or may not result in scarring and the male folk are more likely to have it. Anabolic steroids taken by some body builders (male and female alike) can make back acne worse It also occurs in patients with acne prone skin and can be caused by back dandruff, erythema and inflammation at the back, polycystic ovarian diseases (for females), waxing and or shaving, and friction or heat at the back. A rare cause might be exposure to certain chemicals found in some work places. Humid conditions and tight clothes can also trigger it. You can get rid of back acne with the following tips;
There are certain lotions, creams and gels that can be applied topically to treat back acne and they include
Benzoyl peroxide kills bacteria, reduces inflammation ad unblocks pores. Its strength varies according to different brands, there’s 2.5%, 4%, 5% and 10% strength. To use it, the back should be washed about 20-30 minutes before application. Using a water based preparation, Start with a lower strength to be on the safe side and increase it if need be. To prevent skin irritation, reduce the strength or the time it stays on. Once a day will be okay but you can increase it to twice a day if the back acne is severe.
Retinoids unplug blocked pores and also reduce inflammation. They include adapalene , tretinoin and isotretinoin in different brands. Retinoids can be used for early appearances and mild forms of back acne. With retinoid, the back may look worse before it actually gets better. It’s best to apply it in the evening/night as sensitivity to the sun is increased with its use. As with Benzoyl Peroxide, it’s also advisable to start with a low strength prescription, a less frequent application and short time duration. It should not be used by pregnant women ore women who intend to get pregnant anytime soon.
Some topical antibiotics can also reduce bacteria and the occurrence of inflammation. They are great for treating minor back acne and their side effects are lesser than other topical `applications. These antibiotics are usually prescribed with other medicines or topical applications for effectiveness.
The pill is a hormone treatment that specific for women, especially for cases where their back acne is linked to hormonal changes such as their menstrual cycles, o0vulation cycles and the likes. The oestrogen part of very helpful especially in Co-cyprindiol , a variety of the pill for women who are sensitive to the androgen hormone. Co-cyprindiol is a combination of oestrogen plus cyproterone (an anti-androgen).
Isotretinoin is usually recommended by a dermatologist when other treatments have been applied to no avail. This is usually because of the side effects associated with its use. However, isotretinoin reduces sebum and clears spots even in severe cases. These topical treatments should be applied to the general area and not just on the spots.
The treatments should also be continued daily for 4-6 weeks to see improvements. If the back acne persists after this, please see a dermatologist.
A balanced and healthy diet will make it easier for you to get rid of back acne. It will enhance and speed up the effectiveness of acne treatments. Indulge in more of water and less of sodas and carbonated drinks. Incorporate grains, fruits and vegetables into your diet. Reduce your intake of salt, sugar, spices, fatty and processed foods. Smoking and Excessive intake of alcohol may exacerbate back acne and frustrate the treatments.
Take a quick bath or shower when sweaty, especially after any form of mild-serious exercise. This will ensure that the sweat is washed off and prevent your back from being susceptible to acne. By taking a shower you can also be sure that your pores stay clean and open. Make sure you get a good rinse before leaving the bathroom; there shouldn’t be any form of soap residue or shampoo/conditioner clinging to your back. Use clean towels too. Don’t yield to the temptation of skipping the shower when sweaty. A body scrub will also come in handy to encourage exfoliation and unblocking of pores
Tight clothes can rub against the skin and cause irritation especially in humid areas. So clothing, particularly under wears should be clean and loose and breathable, not tight fitting. Cotton materials and other natural fibers should be preferred as underwear and a fresh one should be worn daily. Clothes should also be laundered regularly with a soap that’s gentle to avoid skin irritation. For clothes that require bleaching such as whites, they should be rinsed properly to remove traces of the chemicals.
Bed clothes and coverings should also be washed regularly. Bed sheets can be bleached once in a while bed covers and blankets can be washed normally, but at regular intervals. The thing is this; once you don’t feel comfortable with them you should change them. If you have pets you should consciously take double care to change your sheets twice in a week.
Keep your hair off your back as much as possible, especially long hair that might be dirty or laden with all sorts of products that can aggravate the acne
Relax, exercise and get adequate rest to keep your body in a balanced mode and reduce the chances of stress-related acne
Oatmeal soaks excessive sebum and oil off the skin. It also exfoliates the skin, removing dirt and dead skin in the process. To use, blend three spoons of oatmeal into an almost fine powder. Put the same amount into a clean sock or muslin cloth and tie the end. Run a warm bath and add the powdered oatmeal into it. Soak in the bath for about 20-30 minutes and squeeze the sock regularly while soaking to replenish the oatmeal in your bath. Repeat this regularly.
Epsom salt activates enzymes that help the skin to absorb essential vitamins necessary for its health. It also detoxifies the skin and reduces inflammation. To use Epsom salt to treat back acne, fill your bath tub with water and add 1-2 cups of Epsom salt into it. An Epsom salt bath does not require commercial bathing soaps or gels or shampoos. Just scrub your back gently with a soft sponge and soak for about 20 minutes. Do not rub Epsom salt on your back directly. To avoid dehydration, please drink plenty of water afterwards.
Sea salt for back acne is best when it’s organic. It absorbs excess oils and moisture on the skin, and inhibits the growth acne-causing bacteria. Table salt contains iodine which exacerbates acne and so should not be used as an alternative. Sea salt can be used in various ways. You can soak in a sea salt bath once or twice a day, for about 20-30 minutes, depending on how severe the back acne is. An alternative is to get a spray bottle, pour a sea salt solution into it and spray on the back twice daily. If you reside close to the sea side, you can take regular swims; it’s as good as and even better than having a soak!
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar (ACV) fights bacteria, balances the body’s pH levels, and reduces inflammation. It can be taken internally and applied topically at the same time for maximum results. To drink, add 2 tablespoons of ACV into a glass of water and drink daily. For the topical application, Mix 1 part apple cider vinegar with 2 parts water to make a toner, pour into a spray bottle and spray on your back. Allow the solution to dry on your skin and leave for about 20-30 minutes, then rinse with water. You can also use a cotton wool ball to apply the solution. Do this regularly until your back is clear.
Lemon juice contains citric acid, a powerful astringent that eliminates dead skin cells and aids the growth of new skin. It will also cause new acne to dry up and old scars to fade away. Lemon juice, preferably freshly squeezed, is best used after a bath or shower and can be applied using a spray bottle or with a cotton ball. Leave it on for some hours and then rinse off. This process can be done daily for the first week and the thrice or twice a week afterwards.
Baking soda has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. It reduces swelling, eliminates bacteria and balances the skin’s pH level. It is also an exfoliant that cures back acne by ridding the skin of dead skin cells. To use, make a paste with baking soda and water. Apply this paste to your back and leave for about 10-15 minutes. Rinse afterwards with water and pat skin dry. This process should be repeated like once in a week.
The Aloe Vera plant and gel is known for its astringent, antifungal, emollient, and regenerative properties. It heals fungal, wounds and scars, smoothes and softens skin, and encourages the growth of new cells in the affected area. For best results, freshly squeezed aloe vera gel is best instead of the commercially refined products. Aloe vera can also be used topically to speed up the healing process when using other forms of treatment. To use, cut open the aloe vera plant and scoop out the gel. The gel should then be allowed to dry and left on if possible. This treatment can be repeated daily or at for effectiveness.
Clove essential oil is a natural anaesthetic that has analgesic, antibacterial, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory, properties. It reduces swelling, kills bacteria and infection associated with back acne and repairs damaged skin cells. This oil contains eugenol, an antibacterial component that effectively kills bacteria and reduces swelling. Eugenol is very potent and so Clove oil should not be used without diluting it first to reduce burning or irritation or itching. It can be diluted with carrier oils like coconut oil, olive oil, carrot oil, almond oil or grape seed oil. To use on back acne, dilute 1teaspoon of clove oil with 10 teaspoons of any of the other oils. Apply this to the skin with the aid if a cotton ball. It should be applied to the affected area only. This treatment can be repeated 2/3 times a week.
Orange peel contains retinol, which aids the removal of dead skin cells and the regeneration of new skin cells. It also has vitamin C that helps fade acne scars and prevent the formation of new ones. To use for back acne, blend a dry orange peel and water in a blender. Add 3 tablespoons of honey and 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon and blend again to form a smooth paste. This paste should then be applied on your back and left till it dries off. If honey and cinnamon is not available, a simple blend of an orange peel and water will do the job quite well! Repeat this regularly.