Acne (Acne vulgaris)


What is Acne?

Acne is the small sebum (lipid) filled boils that appear on the skin, mainly on the face where the concentration of sebaceous glands is higher. According to Ayurveda, acne is predominantly seen in those with high Pitta body composition, where breakouts on the skin are common. Ayurveda recommends several approaches to control acne, most of which are mainly to balance the pitta dosha.

What are the Symptoms of Acne?

Typical: Oily skin, skin redness, pain near the nasal area where bumps are beginning to appear, blackheads, Tenderness.

Might Experience: Uneven skin texture, Roughness, Redness.

What are the Causes of Acne?

  • Emotional stress that leads to hormonal imbalance
  • Premenstrual Syndrome or PMS
  • Lack of exercise
  • High intake of fatty foods
  • Exposure to certain chemicals in cosmetics
  • Not exfoliating the skin
  • Constipation
  • Exposure to sunlight

When to see a Doctor?

When acne is a common appearance even beyond the menstrual cycle, it is painful and breakouts do not respond to OTC medicines. Or if you feel your condition is worsening. Or if consistent, Acne is associated with sudden changes in body weight.

Regular screening: Acne can be examined by a simple visual examination of the doctor. The doctor might take a swab to rule out the cause of infection.

Lifestyle Changes to Prevent Acne

  • Keeping your bowel movement smooth: Keeping your colon healthy and clean is the first step to check your Acne does not aggravate. Include fibrous foods (fruits and vegetables) in your diet. Drink plenty of water. If you do not have oily skin, try castor oil supplements. Try Triphala supplement with warm water.
  • Exercise: Daily exercise and yoga postures like Lion pose and moon salutation help with Acne.
  • Facial massage: Facial massage and everyday relaxation are essential. Especially cleaning off your makeup and wiping your face with aloe vera sap is found to help relieve Acne.
  • Meditation: Emotional stress is one of the major causes of Acne. Regular meditation and Mindfulness practices will certainly help in preventing Acne.

Common Ayurvedic Remedies for Acne

Here are three pastes you can make at home and apply to your skin. They can be effective in reducing acne.
  • Apply Aloe Vera sap to your face, let it dry and rinse off.
  • Apply a face pack made of Sandalwood powder + Turmeric + Milk. Let it dry and Rinse off (the skin might look a tinge of yellow).
  • Apply neem leaves paste. Allow it to dry, and then wash it off.

Curative Ayurvedic Herbs:
Kutaki | Guduchi | Shatavari

Preventative Ayurvedic Herbs:
Manjistha | Neem | Tea Tree| Calendula | Chamomile | Lavender | Rosemary | Aloe Vera

Chinmayi Kulkarni

Chinmayi is a Nutritionist turned Marketer, with Masters in both Marketing and Nutrition. Her focus is to combine her knowledge to understand and evangelize Ayurveda.

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