Pustules are one of the types of acne where you can see the pus filled bumps with reddish base on the skin. Starting from the size of a pimple, they can become quite big. They can occur anywhere in the body but are more common on face, chest and back. They can also occur in groups. One of the most common causes of pustules is the hormonal changes or imbalance in the body. Thus, it is most common the teenagers who are undergoing hormonal changes in their body. Usually, pustules can be treated with medications but surgery may be needed in the severe cases.
Pustules can also result due to inflammation caused by allergic reactions in the body. The allergy can happened due to environmental allergens, bite of a poisonous insect or infected food. The clogging of pores accompanied by inflammation, result into acne. The acne filled with pus takes the form of pustules. The pus develops due to infection and fills up the bumps. These bumps gradually become harder and painful. With the passage of time, the acne becomes severe and takes up the form of cysts, referred as cystic acne.
How Long Do Pustules Take to Go Away?
The duration of pustules is anywhere between 1 to 2 weeks to completely go away. But this is not a standard rule pustules can also last for months. The pustules that are small and mild do not require any treatment to get rid of them. However, the pustules that persist can become severe and bigger. Such pustules require cleanser to get rid of them. Wash your face twice a day with cleanser and normal water. Avoid touching the acne with fingers. Use soft cotton cloth to soak water from your face. Pustules can be treated with the help of acne medications easily available over the counter. Benzoyl peroxide, sulfur and salicylic acid are the common ingredients of the acne medications. The acne medications can be safely applied to any part of the body except genital areas. Read the instructions carefully printed on the label.
Most acne medications would end up making your skin dry and rough as they absorb the excess oil from your face. If you have sensitive skin, you must take special care to choose a product that suits your skin type. Pay attention to how your skin responds to acne medications before continuing to use them.
Pustules can be irritating and you would be tempted to touch in an effort to pick them off. You need to control your temptations as it can make the acne worse by spreading the infection. Avoid using oil-based products on your skin if you are having pustules as they can make them worse by clogging the follicles further.
When to See Your Doctor for Pustules?
You can wait for a few days to see if the acne medications are making your skin better. If the pustules persist even after application of the acne medications, you must seek advice of a specialist sector such as a dermatologist. He would help you get the stronger and more effective medications to treat pustules.
The acne medications obtained from doctor’s prescription are often helpful in getting rid of the tough pustules. They can also get rid of the acne resulting from bacterial infections. Some of the common acne medicines prescribed by the doctors include antibiotics such as amoxicillin, dapsone and doxycycline.
In some care cases, the pustules can become severe and cannot be treated with medications. In such cases, a surgical procedure called as photodynamic therapy (PDT) is required to treat pustules. It not only gets rid of the acne but also makes your skin smooth and free from acne scars. Refer your doctor to know if photodynamic therapy is safe for you.
“Acne: Symptoms & Causes” – Mayo Clinic provides information on various types of acne, including pustules, their causes, and treatment options. Read more
- “Acne Vulgaris: A Review of Causes and Treatment Options” – This article in the U.S. National Library of Medicine discusses the causes and treatment options for acne vulgaris, including pustules. Read more
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