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Folliculitis and Acne
Understanding the difference

How do you know if you have acne, folliculitis,
or something else?

Information on the connection between acne and hormones

Some skin conditions can look very similar, which can make determining a precise treatment difficult. Understanding your symptoms will help you determine the skin condition you have so you can get effective treatment and relief. Let's take a look at the definition, symptoms and causes of folliculitis, acne, and gram-negative folliculitis.

The information you are about to read is obtained from doctors of dermatology and the references are included at the bottom of this page.

Folliculitis is an infection of the hair follicles, and usually appears as small, white-headed pimples around one or more hair follicles. It looks like acne and can be confused for it, and with severe cases, it can cause hair loss and scarring too. The signs and symptoms of folliculitis vary, depending on the type of infection, and can include:

  • - Itchiness or tenderness
  • - Clusters of small red bumps that develop around hair follicles
  • - Pus-filled blisters that can break open and crust over

Every hair on your body grows from a follicle and is attached to a small muscle. The muscle contracts when you get cold or frightened, and the hair raises above the level of your skin which is often referred to as 'goose bumps.' Just above the muscles are sebaceous glands that produce oil that lubricates your skin and coats each hair shaft. The oil is carried to the follicles and skin in tiny ducts.

When the follicles become damaged, they might be invaded by bacteria, viruses, or fungi, which leads to infections such as folliculitis.

What causes folliculitis?

It usually develops because you have damaged your hair follicles. The common causes are shaving, tight clothing, or clothing that rubs your skin, excessive sweating, skin abrasions, or makeup. When the follicles are injured, they are more likely to become infected.

How is it treated?

Folliculitis usually heals on its own in about 2 weeks, but deep or recurring folliculitis may need medical treatment.

Types of deep folliculitis include:

Gram-negative folliculitis - This condition is a bacterial infection that is due to a negative reaction to long term antiobiotic treatment for acne vulgaris or rosacea. It's a rare condition characterized by pustules and cysts, and Accutane and Isotretinoin is often effective in combating gram-negative folliculitis.

Antibiotics alter the normal balance of bacteria in the nose, leading to an overgrowth of harmful organisms. This doesn't cause problems in most people, and the flora in the nose returns to normal once antibiotics are stopped. In a few people, gram-negative bacteria spreads to the cheeks, chin and jaw line, where they sometimes cause new acne lesions.

How is it treated?

In gram-negative folliculitis, the bacteria are resistant to many antibiotics. Isotretinoin and Accutane is effective against this bacteria. It's best to see a dermatologist for treatment.

Folliculitis and Acne

Acne - Acne develops when the hair follicles become plugged with oil and dead skin cells. This occurs when your body produces an excess amount of oil and dead skin cells, and both build up in the hair follicle and form together as a soft plug. If the plug causes the follicle wall to bulge, it produces a whitehead. If the plug is open to the surface, it darkens and causes a blackhead. The infection causes redness, swelling, and pain.

The real issue with acne is how it affects the person who is suffering with it emotionally and mentally. The biggest myth that surrounds acne by those that suffer with it, is that acne is caused by dirt, it is absolutely not caused by dirt.

What causes acne?

The exact cause of acne is not always clear but doctors believe these factors may cause it:

How is acne treated?

Your first line if defense in effectively treating your acne is to define and follow a daily regimen.
I have already developed an acne regimen for you

adult acne treatments

Are you ready to clear your acne?

The Acne Regimen provides a step-by-step program for treating acne.

The acne regimen works effectively to combat light to moderate acne. If you have severe acne, you may require a more aggressive treatment from a dermatologist.

Folliculitis and Acne

Additional Reading

Types of Acne -  It's important for you to know which type of acne you have before you can effectively treat it.

What Causes Acne - Find out what causes acne, the contributing factors, and what you can do to get your acne under control

Diet and Acne - Can eating the right foods can help clear your acne?

Acne Vulgaris - Acne Vulgaris / Acne is not just a teenage problem!
Acne vulgaris is the most common form of acne, and is seen most often in teenagers or young adults.

Cystic Acne - Cystic acne is the harshest and most severe form of acne. Understanding what cystic acne is can help you to better treat this condition on your own body.

Folliculitis Acne - Some skin conditions such as folloculitis and acne can look very similar, which creates difficulty in determining a precise treatment. Understanding your symptoms will help to find an effective treatment

Home Treatment for Acne - Excellent homemade remedies. Your kitchen is a treasure house of remedies for treating acne - let's explore it together

Hormones and Acne - Are hormones and acne connected? You bet they are. Find your hormonal acne treatment here.

How to Pop a Pimple - Guide to safely popping pimples, a zit, or a spot

Natural Acne Remedies - Don't let acne ruin your life, if you haven't tried natural
Acne remedies . . . you may want to. If you have, and were
Not successful . . . you haven't tried these natural solutions

Stress and Acne - Are stress and acne related?
Information on the connection of stress and acne

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