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Dr Maggie Ju skin care clinic.

Understanding Acne

Acne, a common skin condition affecting millions worldwide, transcends mere aesthetics. It can significantly impact one's self-esteem and quality of life.

Acne is a prevalent skin condition that affects individuals of all ages, genders, and ethnicities. While often associated with adolescence, it can persist into adulthood and present unique challenges. Understanding the causes, symptoms, and types of acne is essential for effective management and treatment.

Causes of Acne:

Excessive Sebum Production: Sebaceous glands produce sebum, an oily substance that lubricates the skin. However, overproduction of sebum can lead to clogged pores, providing an ideal environment for acne-causing bacteria to thrive.

Bacterial Infection: Propionibacterium acnes, a type of bacteria found on the skin, can multiply rapidly in clogged pores, causing inflammation and acne lesions.

Hormonal Changes: Fluctuations in hormone levels, particularly during puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause, can stimulate sebum production, contributing to acne development.

Genetic Predisposition: A family history of acne can increase an individual's susceptibility to developing the condition.

Dietary Factors: While the relationship between diet and acne is complex and not fully understood, certain foods, such as high-glycemic-index carbohydrates and dairy products, may exacerbate acne in some individuals.

Symptoms of Acne:

Non-inflammatory Lesions: These include open comedones (blackheads) and closed comedones (whiteheads), which result from blocked hair follicles filled with sebum and dead skin cells.

Inflammatory Lesions: Papules, pustules, nodules, and cysts are inflammatory acne lesions characterized by redness, swelling, and tenderness due to bacterial infection and inflammation.

Hyperpigmentation: Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) may occur following acne lesions, particularly in individuals with darker skin tones, leading to persistent discoloration even after the acne has healed.

Scarring: Severe acne can cause scarring, which may manifest as shallow depressions (atrophic scars) or raised bumps (hypertrophic scars) on the skin.

Types of Acne:

Comedonal Acne: Characterized by the presence of comedones (blackheads and whiteheads), comedonal acne is non-inflammatory and typically mild to moderate in severity.

Inflammatory Acne: Inflammatory acne involves papules, pustules, nodules, and cysts, which result from the immune response to bacterial infection within the hair follicles. It can cause pain, swelling, and scarring and is often more severe than comedonal acne.

Hormonal Acne: Hormonal fluctuations, particularly increased androgen levels, can trigger acne development, leading to lesions primarily concentrated around the chin, jawline, and lower face in women.

Cystic Acne: Cystic acne is a severe form of inflammatory acne characterized by deep, painful cysts that can result in significant scarring if left untreated. It often requires aggressive medical intervention for effective management.

Acne is a complex skin condition with diverse underlying causes and manifestations. While it can be distressing and challenging to manage, understanding its causes, symptoms, and types is crucial for effective treatment and prevention.

What triggers Acne Breakouts: Causes, Acupuncture

Causes of Acne Breakouts

Acne occurs when hair follicles become clogged with oil, dead skin cells, and bacteria. Several factors contribute to the development of acne breakouts:

Hormonal Changes: During puberty, pregnancy, or other hormonal fluctuations, the body produces more sebum (oil), which can clog pores.

Genetics: Family history plays a role in determining who is more prone to acne.

Diet: Certain foods, such as high-glycemic diets and dairy products, may trigger or worsen acne in some individuals.

Stress: Stress can increase the production of hormones like cortisol, which may lead to more oil production and acne.

Medications: Some medications, such as steroids and certain antidepressants, may contribute to acne.

Skincare Products: Using oil-based or comedogenic skincare products can clog pores and lead to breakouts.

Acupuncture can help control the acne breakouts by reducing inflammation and unclogging the pores.

Acupuncture for Acne Treatment

Acupuncture is believed to work by improving circulation and reducing inflammation in the body. Acne is often caused by inflammation and hormonal imbalances, which acupuncture can address. Acupuncture also stimulates the body's natural healing response, which can help to reduce the appearance of acne and prevent future breakouts.

Studies on Acupuncture for Acne

Several studies have been conducted on the effectiveness of acupuncture for acne. In a 2013 study published in the Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies, researchers found that acupuncture was effective in reducing the severity of acne and improving skin texture.

Acupuncture is also believed to have fewer side effects than conventional acne treatments, such as topical creams and oral medications. These treatments can cause dryness, redness, and irritation of the skin, whereas acupuncture is generally considered to be safe and well-tolerated.

Acupuncture is a safe and effective treatment for acne that can help to reduce inflammation, balance hormones, and improve skin texture. While more research is needed to fully understand how acupuncture works for acne, there is evidence to suggest that it can be a beneficial addition to a comprehensive acne treatment plan.


Acupuncture is a natural and holistic therapy. While acupuncture is commonly known for its ability to relieve pain, it can also be an effective treatment for acne. Here are ten reasons why you should consider trying acupuncture to get rid of your acne.

Firstly, acne is a chronic condition that can last for years without responding to traditional treatments such as creams or medication. Acupuncture offers a natural alternative that can effectively reduce and manage acne symptoms.

Secondly, acne can be unsightly and can significantly impact your self-esteem, especially when inflamed cysts or nodules are present. Acupuncture can improve the appearance of acne by reducing inflammation and promoting healthy skin.

Thirdly, acne can have a negative impact on your social life and confidence. Acupuncture can help alleviate the emotional toll that acne takes by improving your overall sense of well-being.

Fourthly, acne spots are not merely on the surface of the skin; they occur deep within hair follicles. These blockages cannot be easily washed away like dirt. Acupuncture can penetrate the skin to reach the hair follicles and clear blockages.

Fifthly, inflamed acne spots can be painful and irritating to the skin. Acupuncture can reduce pain and skin irritation, leading to improved comfort and a reduction in the likelihood of scarring.

Sixthly, inflammation plays a crucial role in acne lesion formation. The increased production of oil and accumulation of abnormal inner lining cells in the oil gland follicles cause the formation of pimples. Bacteria grow in the follicles, triggering an immune response that causes inflammation. Acupuncture can penetrate deep into the skin and reduce inflammation, release tension, and improve local circulation, leading to a reduction in acne.

Seventhly, hormonal imbalances can play a role in acne formation. Acupuncture can help balance hormones, which can be particularly beneficial for those with hormonal acne.

Eighthly, stress can exacerbate acne symptoms. Acupuncture can reduce stress levels, which can help to reduce the risk of acne formation.

Ninthly, acne can cause scarring. Acupuncture can help reduce inflammation and the likelihood of scar formation, as well as repair existing scars.

In summary, acupuncture is a holistic and natural treatment that can offer a range of benefits for acne sufferers. It can improve the appearance of acne, reduce inflammation and pain, balance hormones, reduce stress levels, and minimize the likelihood of scarring. If you suffer from acne, consider trying acupuncture to help manage your symptoms and improve your overall sense of well-being.

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