It’s very natural for you to want to pop a pimple and squeeze the life out of it but dermatologists advise against it. It takes a lot of patience to wait for the pimple to heal on its own. It’s the same for all of us. Some pimples can be popped but popping pimples incorrectly might lead to infection and scars. It also delays the natural healing process thus, it’s best to leave the pimples alone. Your skin best knows how to heal a pimple.
There’s a proper way to pop a pimple, which we will describe in this article.
What is a white head pimple?
Medical term: closed comedones.
A whitehead is also a type of acne which forms when dead skin cells, oil, and bacteria become trapped within your pores. Whiteheads can range in size, some being so small that they are almost virtually invisible or might grow larger into noticeable acne blemishes.
When does it occur?
Whiteheads are formed when dead skin cells, oil, and bacteria combine to create a white tip of the oil-skin mixture.
Possible causes for pimples:
Why shouldn’t you pop pimples?
You must have probably been suggested that you shouldn’t pop the pimple by yourself. Below are a few reasons why:
- You might end up breaking your skin barrier and could create permanent acne scarring.
- Popping a pimple could spread the bacteria and pus from the infected pore to surrounding pores in the area which can create a bigger acne outbreak.
- Popping a pimple can delay your body’s natural healing process, which causes your pimple’s healing to take longer and ends up giving you a blemish that lasts even longer.
- You might push the pus and bacteria further under your skin and this could be inflammation or even a worse outbreak.
How to do it safely?
Despite everything being said, some people may not be able to resist the temptation of popping a pimple. If that’s the case, follow some guidelines which will be safer for your skin.
- Wash the hands thoroughly with soap and water, so you don’t cross-infect your pimple with bacteria on your hands.
- Use a normal facial cleanser to wash your face.
- Use an exfoliating product that includes alpha hydroxy or beta hydroxy acid.
- Apply rubbing alcohol using a cotton ball to the area of the pimple.
After the safety measures, you can take the following steps to pop the pimple:
- Apply a clean, warm washcloth to the pimple for up to 5 minutes. This will help soften your skin and allow the contents to come out more easily.
- Sterilize a small needle with rubbing alcohol.
- Now, poke the center of the whitehead gently with the needle. Sometimes this could be enough to allow the whitehead to drain.
- In case the contents do not come out, wrap tissues or cotton pads around the tips of your fingers.
- Use the padded fingers to gently push down and inward. Apply gentle pressure to the whitehead and encourage the contents to come out.
- If the result is still not achieved, stop squeezing. It might not be the right time for the pimple to pop.
- To avoid the spreading of dirt and bacteria to your skin and pores, it’s best for you to keep your hands away from your face.
- Wash your hair and skin every day. But excessive washing should be avoided because this may cause irritation on the face and worsen your acne. Don’t go to the bed with your makeup on.
- Using a mild cleanser to wash your face twice a day is best for you. Harsh cleansers could cause more breakouts.
- It’s best for you to use oil-free lotions or moisturizers. This could limit the amount of oil added to your skin.
- It’s always best for you to let your skin heal on its own.
- If you have to pop that pimple, squeeze it at once.
- Regarding your acne breakouts, talk to a specialist.
- Some women use birth control pills to help control acne that is caused by fluctuating hormones. Talk to your doctor about it.
A few of the top medications for whitehead pimples are listed below, but it’s always best for you to visit a specialist. They can give you the best prescription for you.
- Retinoids and retinoid-like drugs.
- Azelaic acid and salicylic acid
- Combined oral contraceptives
- Anti-androgen agents
- Light therapy
- Chemical peel
- Drainage and extraction
- Steroid injection
When to see a dermatologist?
It might be difficult for you to know the right time to see a dermatologist about your acne. You might not be bothered about it or might not believe it to be serious enough to see a doctor but it’s best for you to visit a dermatologist if it’s possible.
Below are the few reasons that might help you determine the right time for you to visit a dermatologist:
- If other methods fail to clear up your whiteheads, it may be time to see a dermatologist. They could help you remove whiteheads by prescribing stronger medications.
- If you have frequent outbreaks, painful cystic acne, or acne that never seems to go away, it’s probably best for you to see a dermatologist.
- If that acne is leaving scars on your skin or making you feel uncomfortable and self-conscious, visit a dermatologist.
What does a dermatologist say?
The main rule dermatologists suggest for the public when it comes to pimple popping is “Don’t do it at home”. It’s best to visit a dermatologist if possible.
According to a dermatologist the open and closed comedones — better known as blackheads and whiteheads — are best left to professionals, who can use comedone extractors to gently clean out pores.
Misconception about whiteheads:
Different misconceptions about whiteheads can be heard. It’s better to understand the facts about whiteheads in order to get rid of them. Below are a few facts that you might need to know:
- Excessive washing and scrubbing don’t prevent whiteheads.
- Dirt doesn’t cause pimples.
- Popping pimples doesn’t get rid of acne faster
- Washing your face too hard can irritate the skin and worsen existing acne.
- Greasy foods don’t cause acne.
Popping your own pimples is never a great idea. It’s best for you to visit a dermatologist if you can afford it. For some reason, if you can’t then it’s best for you to let your skin heal itself. Patience is the key.
But if you do occasionally feel like you have to treat a pimple by popping it, make sure to follow a proper technique. Be sure to clean your hands and sterilize the instruments you plan to use to pop your pimple. If you keep getting outbreaks, arrange an appointment with your dermatologist.