How to Encourage Good Bacteria on the Face

by Samuel Sohlden

Encouraging positive bacterial growth on the face requires simple lifestyle changes.

face to face image by Melanie von Snarly from Fotolia.com

The human body lives in a complex symbiotic relationship with bacteria, but some can be harmful or even pathogenic. Your face is especially susceptible to bacterial growth. This can often result in acne, a skin condition that is in part aggravated by the presence of parasitic bacteria. By learning how to prevent the growth of pathogenic bacteria on the face, you can prevent acne while encouraging the growth of good bacteria as well.

Items you will need

  • Probiotic yogurt
  • Facial cleansers
  • Sunscreen

External Treatment

Step 1

Wash your face daily to prevent oil and dirt buildup. When excess oil and dirt is on your face, it clogs your pores. This makes it easy for pathogenic bacteria to move in and start multiplying, aggravating skin conditions such as acne.

Step 2

Use a shampoo that specifically removes oil. Hair oil can foster bacterial growth on your face's skin, so shower one to two times per day to avoid excess oil.

Step 3

Avoid touching your face. This can transfer pathogenic bacteria to your face, which compete for resources and reduce the amount of beneficial bacteria species present.

Step 4

Use sunscreen when spending extended periods of time outside. Sun can damage the skin, making it prone to bacterial infection.

Step 5

Stop using oil-based moisturizers or makeup. The oil in these products can clog pores and allow pathogenic bacterial species to colonize, which reduces the amount of beneficial bacteria present because of competition.

Internal Treatment

Step 1

Avoid eating foods that are hard to digest. According to Acne Replies, "The damaging bacteria in your small intestine and, more importantly, in your colon actually feast on undigested food. They design evil toxins" as part of "their metabolic activity." These toxins can then transfer to the skin, creating an environment prone to negative bacterial growth and hostile to beneficial bacteria.

Step 2

Avoid consuming antibiotics. Antibiotics will eliminate all bacteria in its path, including the beneficial types on your face. This creates an opportunity for pathogenic bacteria to invade once the antibiotic regimen ends.

Step 3

Cut out consumption of prescription and over-the-counter medicine. Prescription and OTC drugs can disrupt the natural functioning of the human digestive system. This imbalance can inhibit the growth of beneficial bacteria while encouraging the growth of pathogenic species.Consult a doctor about the digestive effects these medications might have.

Step 4

Consume probiotic bacteria in the form of yogurt. These bacteria can help restore the balance of bacteria within the digestive system, which prevents the build-up of toxins that can foster pathogenic bacterial growth and encourages the establishment of beneficial bacteria on the face.

Tips

  • Avoid the consumption of processed food and meat. These can contain hormones and antibiotics that can negatively affect the growth of probiotic bacteria.

    If using a facial skin-care regimen, evaluate its potential effects on the presence of beneficial bacteria on your face. Many skin-care products indiscriminately kill healthy bacteria on the face that prevent the growth of parasitic bacteria, such as those that cause acne in the first place.

Warnings

  • Avoid washing your face too often. This can cause it to dry out, which might lead to unsightly peeling.

Photo Credits

  • face to face image by Melanie von Snarly from Fotolia.com

About the Author

Samuel Sohlden began his freelance writing career in 2007. His work appears on various websites, with articles focusing on science and health. In 2010 he attended the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in San Jose, Calif. Sohlden is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in microbiology from the University of Cincinnati.