Treating acne depends on the type and severity of your acne.
Treatment also depends on how dry or oily your skin is, if you
are male or female, if you are taking any medications, if you
are pregnant or might be soon. These various factors affect
your treatment options and can make any one size fits all acne
treatment method ineffective.
Lucky their are numerous acne treatment options, so while you
might not find one that works the first time, do not give up
just try another. Do to the numerous acne treatments available
today doctors can control most acne outbreaks; with greater
success the earlier treatments are started. Hopping your acne
will go away will not work, your local pharmacy is filled with
many over the counter medications you can try, or visit your
doctor who can prescribe more powerful treatments if needed.
The most popular way to treat mild to moderate acne is by using
a topical treatment. These treatments can be in the form of a
gel, cream, lotion or on a pad. They are applied to the surface
of your skin, hence the name topical. The two main over the
counter topic treatments are Salicylic acid and Benzoyl
peroxide. Prescription Salicylic acid and Benzoyl peroxide are
also available in stronger doses if required. Doctors my also
prescribe ointments containing sulfur, tetracycline,
erythromycin or a retinoid. Many times you will need to use a
combination of the above treatments for best results.
Salicylic acid and retinoids are used to treat the clogged hair
follicles that are causing the acne lesions. They penetrate the
pores and help the dead skin cells dissolve. Benzoyl peroxide,
sulfur, tetracycline and erythromycin are antibacterial
ointments used to treat the inflammation and kill the bacteria
in the blocked follicles.
For people with moderate to server acne, in addition to topical
treatments they my also require some type of oral medication to
treat their acne. The three types of oral medications are
antibiotics, hormones, and isotretinoins. All three require a
Tetracycline, erythromycin, clindamycin, and doxycycline are
the most common prescribed antibiotics. They work by being
absorbed through the digestive system, then into the blood, and
then into the hair follicles where they kill bacteria and reduce
inflammation. This option would be used when topical antibiotic
treatments were unsuccessful.
Hormones are an option available to treat teenage girls and
women with acne. They are usually taken in the form of a birth
control pill. They work by increasing the level of female
hormones in the bloodstream. This helps reduce the production
of androgen, which will then reduce the production of sebum.
For severe acne, isotretinoin is often used. It is a powerful
drug that treats acne by stopping all of the changes in the
skin that causes acne. It kills bacteria, reduces sebum
production, and slows the growth of skin cells.
All of the above acne treatment options should be reviewed
carefully prior to use. As with any type of medication they all
present some type of risk or side effect. For the over the
counter treatments read the product labels and warnings to see
if the product is right for you. For prescription acne
treatments discuss with your doctor all of the potential sides
effects you may experience.