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Genetics and acne

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I don't have any new research to post, but I was hoping people who have come across genetics research or even from your own experience could help me out.

So, my dad, who I happen to take after looks-wise, just told me he had acne well into his thirties and still gets the occasional spot...this news is devastating to me..

However, my mom tells me my dad did not have acne when she met him at exactly 30 years old. I don't know who's memory is failing here - I hope it is my dad's but anyways, I am 27 and still have acne (for about 13 or 14 years now) and I guess I want someone to say "Don't worry, you won't necessarily follow your dad's pattern."

Here's the thing though, can someone post scientific research showing the correlation between parents' and children's acne, percentage-wise. How strong or weak is the correlation? I know there are people who come from families where acne is practically non-existent but they have a pretty bad case, but how about the opposite scenario, where one or both parents had bad or chronic acne, yet the kids lucked out? Many thanks!!!

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My dad had acne so did my brother. Both have the scars to prove it. I am the same. We are prone to icepick and rolling scars. Not nice at all. :wall:

My mum however hardly had any acne at all. I think only a few throughout her whole life. Her parents and siblings were the same.

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Hi jmcsm,

do you known when your dad outgrew acne? How about your brother? are you older than they were when they outgrew it? thanks.

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My parents had little to no acne and I had it for 7 years and it's still

kinda on and off. :wall: Genes don't make any sense but good luck.

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I don't know about my dad but my brother outgrew it in his 20s. I think he is clear most of the time now. He is 26.

I still suffer from acne unfortunately. I am 20.

Genes don't affect some people so it depends I suppose. Acne genes had to start somewhere. In my case it is partly genetics and partly hormonal.

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I can sympathize on how you feel, how-ever I would wait till the Dr says it's ok.

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My dad had bad acne into his 30s and my siblings were mostly spared except my sister when she was younger. My mom had crystal clear skin. I'm the only one with really severe acne and I'm almost 23.

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Neither or my parents have ever had bad skin. They've never need anything more than basic bar soap. As far as I know neither have any of their parents/siblings.

However, I have very oily skin and moderate acne, and both my brother and sister have fairly bad skin, though not as bad as mine.

Maybe we just lucked-out and are the result of hundreds of years of bad skin being a recessive gene in our parents.

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hmmm I think it has some effect my mom didn't have acne my dad claims he has a lot but if he did then it sure doesn't show on his face because he doesn't have scars at all that I can see of. So yeah I don't know if there is a correlation. If there is I guess it's the genes from my dad. Sigh if it is I'm gonna hate my genes forever.

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ya i think i read several articles and stuff that acne is genetic... even if your both parents did not have any acne history, your grandparents and etc could have had acne, but was just carrried over to your parents as recessive genes

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ya i think i read several articles and stuff that acne is genetic... even if your both parents did not have any acne history, your grandparents and etc could have had acne, but was just carrried over to your parents as recessive genes

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My mom recently told me that she started getting acne in her 20s, and her sister got it bad as well. I think my dad got it too, but not as much. So I guess I'm probably doomed to have it for a few more years :(

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Neither of my parents ever had acne. They both got the occasional spot a few times a year, but thats it. None of my siblings ever had acne either (they are all older than me), yet I've had it since I was 11 (and now I'm 26 *tomorrow*). Lucky me!

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I don't believe genetics is the main cause of acne for most people, because if you look at groups of people who eat a healthy non-Western diet that is made up of unhealthy fast foods, milk products, sodas, etc. acne is almost non-existent.

For example...

From the Archives of Dermatology, December 2002 (Volume 138, Number 12) researchers found that:

"Acne vulgaris is virtually nonexistent in 2 nonwesternized populations: the Kitavan Islanders of Papua New Guinea and the Ache hunter-gatherers of Paraguay. Of 1200 Kitavan subjects (including 300 aged 15-25 years) and 115 Ache subjects (including 15 aged 15-25 years), no active cases of acne were observed over an 843-day period. Both Kitavans and Ache hunter-gatherers have in common a relative lack of Western influence, subsisting on low-fat and low-glycemic-load diets (eg, fruit, vegetables, fish, wild game)."

You see in this group of people, even these young teenagers from age 15 didn't have a single case of acne. Now isn't this the time period where most people in the Western world are supposed to get acne?

Okay this describes how their diet is healthy, but it doesn't explain genetic's influence on acne.

So let's observe other ethnicities from around the world who incorporated Western foods into their diet.

Here's a comment from the same study:

"Inuit Eskimo population was devoid of acne when following traditional living and eating habits, but developed acne prevalence comparable to Western societies when adapting to a Western lifestyle. Others have observed a similar transition in nonwesternized societies such as the Peruvian Indians and Bantu of South Africa."

You see, we could've explained that the Inuit Eskimos did not have acne because of their "clear skin genetics" and they were completely devoid of acne at one point in time. But after incorporating Western foods, acne appeared. Same goes for the Peruvian Indians, Bantu of South Africa, and even the Japanese (not included in this particular study)

That's why I think genetics and acne is way over-rated and greatly exaggerated. My dad has serious acne when he was a teenager and even sprouts a few pimples no and then in his late 50's. I had moderate acne also...but when I kept a strict diet, following supplementation my acne almost completely disappeared.

I don't even use any more of those useless benzoyl peroxide/salicylic acid washes anymore and never take antibiotics or drugs because acne always reappears no matter what when I use these treatments. BUT now that I eat a low GI, healthy diet along with supplementation, I almost always have clear skin.

Oh and if you want to look at that study, here's the link (you gotta sign up though):

The study in detail...

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NOBODY in my family has had acne except my grandfather. He had severe acne on his back, and moderate acne on his cheeks/chin.

My father and my mother used to get an occasional pimple in their teens, and so do I. I've had 2 minor breakouts in the past three years, not that bad.

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I agree that the average Western diet is not as healthy since we eat mostly processed stuff and less of fresh fruits and vegetables. Even our meat produts are filled with artificial hormones and antibiotics. Not to mention the 1000's of chemicals we put on our face and body everyday.

But acne has to be partly also genetic. Since we see people all around us eating all the junk food they want but still having clear, spotless skin. Maybe it manifests itself in other ways in their body instead of acne. There has been rise in cardiovascular disease, diabetes etc. only in the last century when we have swithced from natural way to life to all mechanized, sedentary way of life. Girls and boys are attaining puberty earlier. All this is an effect of modern lifestyle I believe.

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my dad had acne, had to take medication for it and still does (43.) same with my uncle. my mom (42) and my aunts (50 and 44) were on medication for it, my mom has scarring and my aunts still have it. my dad's dad had cystic acne, still has a little. my dad's mom did too, has alot of scarring on her cheeks. my younger brother is 11 and i'm really hoping he doesn't get it too..

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acne's definitely hereditary. i feel for my children should i ever have any

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Hey Acne yeah you tried loads and loads of stuff that couldnt work for you ..maybe you should start from inside your body ..CHANGE YOUR DIET ! serious ...

and stop smoking if you do

no alcohol

and check out the net about what type of food can cause u allergy to acne ...some people stop eggs and milk their acne dissappear off

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My grandpa had severe acne (excluding cysts) when he was a teen, but that's probably because he spent his early teens hiding from and ambushing Nazi troops with primitive resistance, as he lost most of his family during World War 2.

Nobody except him in my family has ever had acne, looks like me and my brother are the only ones with mild acne, or acne at all :ninja:

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My parents didn't have acne. Neither did my grandparents. My mum had the occasional zit. A couple of my cousins had mild acne. Seems I'm the only one that breaks out frequently EVERY FREAKiNG DAY.

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Father - had acne until mid 20's.

Mother - late 40's and her acne is getting progressively worse as she gets older.

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neither of my parents had more than a couple zits. i'd be risking it even calling it "acne." somehow i got stuck with the shitty recessive gene that causes me to have it... bummer. maybe it isn't all genetics??

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this is a really interesting question. from what i've read on these forums, i see that there's a general tendency to think of acne in binary terms: you either have it, or you don't. from that follows the assumption that it has a single cause, a switch that turns it on or off. this is too simple. you don't get acne all at once. you get individual pimples and clusters or pimples, all unique, each coming in at different times and for different reasons. also, there's no clear line between having acne and not having it. if you have three zits, you might think of it as acne, but other people probably won't even notice, which explains why people don't agree on the duration of each other's acne. it's also possible to have a random zit from time to time, even with normal skin.

like most diseases with a genetic component, your family history doesn't guarantee what will happen to you, but it indicates what you are more susceptible to. in the case of acne, if your parents had it, you will probably have the skin conditions that make you vulnerable to outbreaks, but you need specific triggers to actually cause the outbreaks. these triggers can build upon one another, so you might have acne because a variety of factors have pushed your skin over the limit. treating it requires that you resolve all the triggers and perhaps get medical treatment for the biological conditions which you inherited, such as excess oiliness or abnormal skin cell function.

if there really has been an increase in the prevalence of acne in western society in recent generations, then we need to ask ourselves what is different. we know that life is stressful and that we are exposed to chemicals and processed foods. however, our parents were exposed to these things as well. the modern era of chemical engineering began in the 1940s.

in my family, my father had acne, but not as bad as mine. what is different between his situation and mine? i eat healthier, exercise more, and probably live a cleaner and less stressful life, so the difference is probably not to be found in there.

here's my opinion on what might be responsible:

the thing that has changed the most in the past 50 years is the intensity of our awareness of acne, and the belief that we should take aggressive action to stop it. i believe that most of my outbreaks were caused by my relentless meddling with my skin, which i did because there are so many products available to use against acne, and there are so many images and messages in the media promoting the idea of flawless skin that it is hard to accept one's own skin with minor imperfections. the result is over-aggressive treatment, such as picking and popping, which irritates the skin and leads it to break out further.

could the explanation be that simple?

if you watch "american graffiti," a 1970s movie set in the 50s, there's a scene in which a teenage ron howard is messing with a zit in a bathroom. the whole attitude toward acne was pretty nonchalant, and the way he dealt with it was simple. now, i look at people's regimens posted on the site, and i see lists of daily regimens extending half a page. that's where i see the difference between our parents' generation and our own.

the relentless prodding of the skin and application of foreign substances, whether natural or man-made, takes one's skin further and further from a normal balance. if you're applying ten things to your face, that means you're rubbing your face at least ten times a day. that kind of irritation has an effect on the tiny pores and follicles inside of your skin, and it can trigger future outbreaks. think about it: you're applying random pressure and mild trauma to these tiny structures that have to keep moving material through tiny pores in order to function. if you rub, scrub, or pick at your skin, you can easily block or damage these structures and trigger a build up that will become inflamed and manifest itself as acne.

my current remission of acne has come at a time when i touch my face twice a day--to apply a topical medication my dermatologist prescribed and then to apply moisturizer. i don't even wash my face. it's definitely greasier and flakier and rougher in texture than it was when i was doing a regimen of washing twice a day with cetaphil and applying benzoyl peroxide twice a day. however, it is no longer red, and it is no longer breaking out. it's just skin now, with some fading spots. the less i think about it, the less i do anything to it, the better it seems to get.

so what i'm saying is that remission can come with the right medication for your particular condition, but it also needs a reduction in irritation, and the willingness to let your skin take care of itself. eating well, avoiding chemicals and hormones, and all that can help because those can probably trigger some of our breakouts, but i believe the biggest triggers are our own hands.

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Nobody in my family has had acne. That includes parents, my brother, grandparents, aunts and uncles, etc. I however got hit with the acne stick and have moderate acne. I for one don't think diet has a lot to do with it as my family doesn't eat very healthy, and nor do I. I have tried changing my diet and been strict with it, only to see minimal results. So I go against this whole post from what I can tell because I don't believe it is genetics or diet. It is hormonal/self induced with a little bad luck mixed in if you ask me. OTC products control it for me well enough, so I'm not concerned. It will go away eventually I hope..

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