Types of Pimples – Understanding and Treating Your Child’s Acne

Types of Pimples

Acne is one of the less fortunate parts of growing up.  Girls will be excited to finally get to wear a little makeup and boys will be glad to have a little more freedom and then all types of pimples come to ruin the party! Not only is acne difficult for kids it is also difficult for parents. Preteens and teenagers are especially susceptible to self-esteem issues. Add on different types of pimples, whiteheads, breakouts and voice changes and you have an “I’m never coming out of my room again” moment waiting to happen!

If your child has gotten their first pimple you may be wondering how you can help them cope. Most of all, you may be wondering how to treat the different types of pimples that your child may have. The first step to successfully treating acne is recognizing what kind of acne that your child is suffering from. Some can effectively be treated over the counter while others may require the specialty care of a dermatologist to prevent scarring. To help you identify the kind of acne your child may have, below is a list of the different types of pimples that most commonly affect teenagers .

Types of Pimples



Black heads are most common on the nose, chin and forehead where oil is most abundant. These types of pimples occur when a pore is clogged but not to the point of being completely clogged. A good way to get rid of blackheads is with a daily facial cleansing routing, a blackhead pore refining mask or blackhead face strips which help lift the debris from the surface of the pores.



A whitehead occurs when a pore has become completely clogged with debris and oil. Whiteheads are among the most dreaded types of pimples because once they emerge they are really hard to get rid of. However, benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid spot treatments are a great way to see them disappear quickly. You should also encourage your teen or preteen to wash their face at least twice a day. This will prevent further whiteheads from forming in the future.



These types of pimples can be very painful and unlike whiteheads, they take longer to heal. That is because pustules are whiteheads that have gathered pus and have become infected. Your teen may have a red circle around the bump with inflammation and a yellow center. There are many topical creams for pustules but often times they may require an antibiotic to fully recover from these types of pimples.



These types of pimples are red bumps with no head. Advise your child to not try to pop a papule as it can increase the length of healing time as well as cause scarring. Applying a warm compress to the area can help reduce inflammation which is the leading cause of papules. You can also apply benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid spot treatments to reduce the healing time.

Nodules and Cysts

nodules and cysts

These types of pimples are the most severe. Nodules are hard lumps that form beneath the skin. They are prone to scarring and you should never try to pop a nodule. This can lead to deeper scarring. Cysts are very similar to nodules except that they are filled with water. You shouldn’t allow your child to pop a cyst as this can cause infection. These types of pimples often require a cortisone shot and other treatments as deemed possible by a dermatologist.

Different types of pimples are to be expected for your growing teen or preteen as they mature. The key to helping your child cope is helping them keep a healthy self-esteem. Teaching your child good self-care is a must. If your child continues to have problems with acne a visit to the dermatologist could make all the difference.

Leave a Comment


Previous post:

Next post: