Do you pick or squeeze your pimples?

Do you pick or squeeze your pimples?
If you do, you are certainly not alone! Excessive picking even has it's own name (Acne Excorie). So here's the bit where I tell you why you should try not to do it (you knew it was coming, didn't you?) and then some suggestions on what to do if you must.
Why can SQUEEZING be a problem?
1. Internal wall rupture: Squeezing what you see on the surface can rupture the hair follicle wall internally... meaning the infected contents of your pimple will spread out into surrounding skin. This often means you simply have another breakout right next to the one you already have, or a larger area gets infected and inflamed, looking worse and taking longer to heal
2. Post Inflammatory Hyper-Pigmentation (PIHP). Have you ever noticed that a pimple can leave a brown to reddish spot in its place after it has healed? This is PIHP - your body is laying down some pigment to try and protect this wounded area. Picking increases the risk of PIHP, which sometimes can go away quickly, however sometimes it can persist for months.
3. Excessive picking can also lead to acne scarring! A much longer term issue
So what to do? 
I totally understand the compulsion to pick and squeeze and have even overdone it on myself numerous times. It's often unrealistic to say "don't pick, full stop" so here are a few suggestions....
1. Ask me for some disposable lances/needles at your next appointment - I always have heaps on hand and happy to hand out. These are great to have in bathroom to use on pustules. Use the single-use lance to very gently pierce an 'exit' point in the centre of the lesion - then you can GENTLY squeeze out the contents with less chance of internal rupture.
2. ONLY extract on well prepared skin! Best after a nice warm shower (to soften the skin), and well cleansed face. Ensure hands are clean too!
3. Cleanse your face again or use a toner to wipe over the area after. Apply a gentle face moisturiser as a barrier after a few minutes.
Picking can also be a sign of stress... if you really feel like you can't stop yourself (and you are worried about it), then look for some support from your preferred mental health expert. It's actually a very common problem so you are not alone!
Feel free to DM me any questions
In good skin health...
Kate xo

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