Although acne is often thought of as purely a teenage problem, adult acne affects half of all adult women and a quarter of all adult men. Adult acne is also called acne rosacea. It is characterized by unsightly thick red skin on the cheeks and nose, in addition to pimples, small red bumps and visible red blood vessels on the skin's surface.
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Unpleasant acne can develop or reoccur in the twenties, thirties or even later and can cause the same feelings of depression and social angst among adults as it does in teenagers. Adult acne can occur as a result of emotional and psychological stress, consumption of certain types of alcohol or hot foods, blocked hair follicles, overactive oil glands, bacteria, irritation and medication. Pregnant women often experience adult acne because of rapid hormonal changes.
Many over-the-counter topical medications, that contain salicylic acid or sulfur, can help control and reduce the severity and frequency of acne outbreaks. Benzoyl peroxide is the most broadly used ingredient in acne medications. It slows down the action of skin glands and kills bacteria.
Adults who have adult acne should stay away from direct sunlight and avoid using any oil-based cosmetics.