Galveston County Daily News (Internet / Print) 03/22/06 No one really knows how to avoid acne, but that doesn’t mean you have to grin and bear it. Sharon Raimer, chair of the dermatology department at the University of Texas Medical Branch, says there are many effective steps a teenager can take to ward off those horrifying blemishes. “First, as your mother always tells you, wash your face,” she said. Don’t get carried away, though. “Too much washing can actually make acne worse,” Raimer said. And it’s not true that the teenagers who struggle most with acne are those who do the poorest job of keeping their skin clean. It’s not dirt that causes acne, Raimer said. It’s bacteria. No one really knows why some people have more trouble with acne than others, Raimer said. “Acne does tend to run in families,” she said. “If mom and dad had trouble with acne, the odds are the kids will, too.” Acne does tend to trouble boys more than girls, Raimer said, but girls can have severe cases, too. The good news, she said, is that no one these days should have to live with those aggravating pimples. Raimer recommends regular use of a cleanser containing benzoyl peroxide.