Cystic acne (acne vulgaris or quite simply acne) causes pimples, which can be emotionally distressing. The pimples can occur on face, neck, shoulders, chest and back. They result from the plugging of hair follicles by dead skin cells and oil. Factors that can contribute to the formation of these lesions are hormonal changes (such as at puberty), drugs like corticosteroids and androgens, foods rich in carbohydrates, such as bread, chips and bagels. The lesions can be in the form of whiteheads, blackheads, raised reddish spots, and cysts. Bacteria tend to build up in these skin lesions. Eventually it can lead to scar formation.
Although acne is not a serious medical disorder, it can cause great concern by affecting your self-esteem and social relationships. So, you may have already tried various remedies for it, including antibiotics, without full satisfaction. Here are some herbal remedies that you can try, to achieve freedom from acne.
5 Herbal Remedies For Cystic Acne
Herbs can be of help in acne by detoxifying and purifying the blood, reducing the inflammation, fighting bacterial infection, and correcting the hormonal imbalances. However, consult your physician before trying any of these herbal remedies.
Dandelion helps by detoxifying the blood, boosting the liver function and correcting the hormonal imbalances. Dandelion extract is derived from the leaves and root of Taraxacum officinale. The active ingredients are taraxinic acid, tetrahydroridentin B, cycloartenol, and many vitamins and minerals.
The dose is 1 cup of its decoction twice daily or 3-4 droppersful of its tincture twice daily. Dandelion leaves and root can also be eaten with salad. Dandelion is also available as tablets and capsules. It is by and large safe to use it, though it can cause allergic reactions in some people.
Burdock is a very effective blood cleanser, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory herb. The extract is derived from the root of Arctium lappa. The active ingredients are volatile oils, tannins, plant sterols, and the antioxidants luteolin and quercetin.
Its dose is 1-2 g tablets or capsules per day, 1 cup of its decoction thrice daily, or 30-60 drops of its tincture once daily. Some of its side effects are allergic reactions, and increased urination. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should not take it.
Calendula extract is obtained from the flowers of Calendula officinalis. The active ingredients in the extract are beta-carotene and lutein. It is available as ointment and cream. It can cause allergic reactions in some people. Avoid using it during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Chasteberry extract is derived from the fruits and seeds of Vitex agnus-castus. The extract contains several flavonoids, such as casticin, isovitexin, kaempferol, quercatagetin and orientin. Consult the product label for dosage. Side effects include nausea, upset stomach, headaches, itching, rash, and weight gain.
Oregon grape helps in cystic acne by fighting the inflammation and bacterial infection, and slowing down the production of skin cells.
The extract is obtained from the root of Mahonia aquifolium, and contains the active ingredients called isoquinoline alkaloids, particularly berberine, berbamine, oxyacanthine and isocorydin. Consult the product label for dosage. Its side effects are sedation and diarrhea.