ACNE, is an inflammatory affection of the sebaceous glands, and blackheads are one of its symptoms. Although the latter may appear on the chest, shoulders and back, they are most frequently seen on the face, causing great annoyance to the person afflicted. A description of them is given on page 155. A noted dermatologist says that eighty three per cent. of all cases of acne are due to constipation or indigestion or to both. Other causes include uterine disease, cheap cosmetics, want of cleanliness, exposure to heat or ,cold winds, some varieties of soap, debility, rich or insufficient food, intemperance, sexual excesses, and changes in the system at puberty. Few cases are incurable, but the majority require months of treatment which should be internal and constitutional, as well as internal and local.
Antimonies Crud. Small red pimples about the face, and on the right shoulder, stinging when touched; acne in drunkards with gastric derangements, severe thirst and white coated tongue.
Calcarea Carb. Acne on the face and neck; when due to sexual excesses; redness of the nose in consequence of difficult or scanty monthly flow; persons with scrofulous constitutions or who work much in water.
Hepar Sulph. Painless pimples on the nape of the neck, forehead and chin; crusty pimples on the face in young people; swelling and suppuration of glands; skin yellow and unhealthy, every small injury suppurates.
Nux Vom. Indigestion with constipation; small fetid ulcers in the mouth and throat. Pimples on the face in persons using wine, liquors, tobacco, patent medicines, or coffee in excess; sedentary habits.
Sepia. Acne on the chin, worse during the monthly flow and pregnancy; pimples about the genitals, legs and in the creases of the joints; skin dirty yellow and scurfy; ailments following vaccination or masturbation.
Silicea. Obstinate cases in scrofulous persons; bad smelling foot sweat; constipation, symptoms worse from wine or getting wet or cold.
Sulphur. Blackheads and little black pits in the face; red, itching pimples on the nose, lips, around the chin, and on the forearm; tendency to boils; chronic cases.
Mercurius Sol. Indolent, bluish red pimples, especially the lower, extremities, in syphilitic or scrofulous persons; suppurating pimples as above; glandular swellings.
Arsenicum. Chronic cases where the skin is dry, rough and dirty looking; the eruption mostly on the face and extremities; blackheads which itch and are painful.
A dose of the indicated remedy may be taken three times a day. Do not eat highly seasoned food, pickles, cake, pastry, nuts, cheese, fried foods, hot bread, sweets, or drink beer, spirits, cocoa, chocolate, or much coffee. Drink water freely, especially hot water in the morning before breakfast. Iron and cod liver oil are indicated in debilitated or scrofulous persons; fresh fruits and vegetables if they agree. Outdoor life, and frequent thorough bathing with friction. Sulphur and iodide of sulphur soaps, and good tar soaps are the best. Shampoo the affected parts every night after a warm sponge bath of the entire body with a flannel cloth, warm water and soap. If the skin is sluggish and the acne chronic, use tincture of green soap. Dry, and apply sulphur ointment, or when there is suppuration, an ointment of sulphur, five per cent., ichthyol, five per cent., and vaseline, one ounce. For other local applications consult the section on this subject on page 176.
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