Zits, plural of zit, refers to small, localized skin eruptions or pimples that occur primarily on the face, neck, and other parts of the body. These dermatological conditions are commonly associated with adolescence and the hormonal changes that occur during puberty. Zits are characterized by the formation of red, inflamed papules or pustules on the skin's surface, often filled with pus.
Zits typically develop when the sebaceous glands found in the skin become clogged with excessive sebum. Sebum is an oily, waxy substance produced by these glands and plays a crucial role in maintaining skin health and moisture. When the sebaceous glands produce too much sebum, or if the skin's pores become blocked by dead skin cells or bacteria, it can lead to the formation of zits.
The presence of zits can cause discomfort and self-consciousness due to their visible appearance, particularly for those experiencing them during adolescence, a period when individuals are particularly concerned about their physical appearance. Zits can range in severity from mild acne consisting primarily of blackheads and whiteheads to more severe cases involving cysts and nodules.
Treating and managing zits often involves maintaining good facial hygiene, such as regular cleansing with mild soaps or cleansers designed for acne-prone skin. Topical treatments containing ingredients like benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid may also be recommended to reduce inflammation and kill bacteria. In more severe cases, medical intervention such as prescription medications or dermatological procedures may be required.
The word "zits" is derived from the early 20th-century slang term "zit", which originally meant a pimple or a skin blemish. The exact origin of this slang term is unclear, but it is thought to be an onomatopoeic word, imitating the sound or appearance of a pimple. Over time, "zit" developed into "zits", which is the plural form of the word. Today, "zits" is commonly used to refer to pimples, especially in informal or colloquial contexts.