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Is your acne a sign of a deeper health problem?


Is your acne a sign of a deeper health problem?

We all know that acne can be caused by hormonal fluctuations. That’s why it’s common to get acne during adolescence, pregnancy, or that time of the month.

In some cases, persistent acne may be a sign of a hormonal condition like PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome).

What is PCOS?

PCOS is one of the most common hormonal disorders in women. In fact, studies show that 1 in 10 women have this condition. It is hereditary.

PCOS is caused by an imbalance of estrogen and progesterone, and is usually associated with the overproduction of androgen. This affects a woman’s ability to develop and release eggs, and can lead to the appearance of benign ovarian cysts. Unfortunately, PCOS can affect fertility and cause irregular or painful menstrual cycles.

Why is PCOS associated with acne?

Symptoms of PCOS include infrequent periods, excess body hair or hair loss, and adult acne. The hormonal imbalances cause the body to produce more oil, which increase your risk for clogged pores and comedones.

What kind of acne is triggered by PCOS?

PCOS-related acne usually appears in the lower part of the face (cheeks, jawline, chin) and the neck. These areas are thought to be “hormonally sensitive.”  The breakouts tend to occur around the menstrual period, when hormonal swings are at their peak.

Aside from that, acne that is triggered by PCOS tends to feel more tender and painful. In many cases, the “bumps” feel like it’s just under the skin.

Another sign that the acne is related to PCOS is that it doesn’t respond to usual skincare treatments like pore-clearing toners or anti-bacterial face washes.  Frequently, cystic acne forms as a result of PCOS.

How do I know that I have PCOS?

If you have persistent adult acne, then have yourself checked by a doctor. He can issue tests that can determine if you have PCOS or other underlying hormonal issues. It’s best to have PCOS diagnosed early, especially if you are young and planning to have a family, since it can affect your ability to conceive.

How can I treat acne if I have PCOS?

The Clifford Clinic has helped hundreds of women conquer acne. Even severe, reoccurring acne can be managed with the right combination of treatments. Its individualized acne program will help manage inflammation, calm the skin, prevent breakouts, and treat even depressed acne scars. The Clifford Clinic also pioneered the AGNES treatment in Singapore.

Contact the Clifford Clinic to find out more about the latest acne treatments.

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