Puberty is a hormonally turbulent period when various changes begin to occur, but the ones that you often contact us about are teen acne and what skincare to use during this period. During puberty increased secretion of sebum with the action of androgenic hormones is particularly pronounced, which is one of the conditions for the development of acne. What and how to use? Do you need the help of a dermatologist? What to avoid? Encouraged by your frequent inquiries and concerns about this problem, we decided to talk to an expert.
Dora Madiraca Glasović is a specialist dermatovenerologist at the Clinic for Skin and Venereal Diseases of the KBC Sestre milosrdnice in Zagreb. She is currently majoring in pediatric dermatology, and her areas of activity are pediatric and aesthetic dermatology and dermatological oncology. This successful doctor is also the mother of two children, Anton, 3 years old and Doris, 15 months old, but she managed to find some time for us all and give first-hand information about this common dermatological problem.
What are the most common skin problems you encounter on a daily basis in teenage patients?
Adolescents most often turn to me precisely because of acne problems, which is expected given that almost 80% of teenagers have this problem. In my daily work, I treat patients with various forms of this disease, from the mildest changes such as comedones to severe inflammatory acne that affects the face, but also other parts of the body.
What would be your most important advice when dealing with acne and what to use?
Puberty, as a transition to the adult world, is a challenging period of life in every way. Because acne occurs on exposed parts of the body, it often has a negative impact on the mental state, social relationships and quality of life of young people. I emphasize to my young patients that acne is not what determines them and that persistence with regular check-ups and adequate therapy is key in fighting this condition.
For mild forms of acne in the sense of comedones with occasional inflammatory papules, I recommend daily face cleansing with a non-comedogenic cleanser and the use of creams and lotions for acne-prone skin. If necessary, I also prescribe differential therapy that contains active anti-inflammatory and keratolytic substances such as local retinoids, azelaic or salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, antibiotics alone or in combination. More severe forms of acne require systemic treatment with an oral antibiotic or retinoid.
From your experience, what mistakes are young people prone to when using cosmetics to treat acne?
Young people often do not have patience and if the prescribed therapy does not give results within a few days from the beginning of the application, they stop using it on their own initiative. Also, they tend to experiment with a number of products or even share therapy with each other with the attitude “if it helped my friend, it will certainly help me”. Frequent changes of products and the use of aggressive products excessively dry out and irritate the skin and can lead to worsening of acne.
I emphasize the importance of an individual approach to each patient with this problem and the need for regular check-ups so that everyone is satisfied with the results.
What skincare regimen would you recommend for young skin that has no imperfections?
The rule of skincare without irregularities is "less is more", ie a simple routine consisting of a mild cleanser, moisturizing non-comedogenic cream or lotion with mandatory photo protection.
Parents often ask at what age is it best to start using skincare products?
Skincare is recommended from an early age to preserve the skin’s protective barrier that helps us fight external stressors. When we talk about acne, I often hear the sentence from my parents in my daily work: "Acne should not be touched, I had them too, so they went away on their own, that's normal". Regardless of their frequency in adolescents, they certainly need to be treated as early as possible to avoid potential long-term consequences such as scarring and changes in skin pigmentation.
Dr. Madiraca Glasović's favorite Skintegra product is:
As a dermatologist, I emphasize the importance of everyday photo protection, so I would single out Solar I. This moisturizing sunscreen fluid with a high protection UVA / UVB factor (SPF30) has an extremely light texture and is easy to apply. It is suitable for all skin types, including sensitive and acne-prone skin because it is non-comedogenic and hydrating, ideal for year-round application.