Acne can be an incredibly disruptive condition in terms of both the physical and emotional toll it takes on a person. So what should you do if you feel like acne has ruined your life? Read on for our best acne treatment advice and coping strategies.
Acne is a skin condition that occurs when the skin produces too much oil. This oil, or sebum, is necessary for protecting the skin barrier, but too much of a good thing is a bad thing. The pores that produce sebum can quickly become clogged when this happens, causing bacteria and oil to become trapped beneath the skin. This leads to the formation of the standard whiteheads and blackheads. Acne is an inflammatory issue, and for many, pimples can be painful and visibly red and swollen. Severe acne, especially conditions like cystic acne, which develop in deeper layers of the skin, can easily cause permanent scarring. In the short term, acne can lead to infections, especially if you pop pimples, which should always be avoided.
But acne doesn’t just hurt the skin; it can also negatively impact a person’s self esteem and overall happiness. Due to the cultural stigma surrounding acne and especially adult acne, many people feel uncomfortable in their own skin with acne. Acne breakouts can keep people from going out and having fun. Social withdrawal is a common issue for acne sufferers. If you’re depressed by your acne, it can feel like a hopeless situation. How do you stop acne and get back that old feeling before the condition affected you? Fortunately, there are many treatments available for acne, and your dermatologist is here to help.
There are a few different courses of action a dermatologist may take when treating your acne symptoms. Acne is not curable, but it’s preventable and treatable. In some cases, managing extreme symptoms in the short term can be all that’s necessary. Teenagers and pregnant women are both often subjected to short-term acne. This is due to hormonal rushes that happen during puberty and pregnancy.
One of the best ways to treat acne, at least as a first line of defense, is topical and oral antibiotics. These drugs work to disable the bacteria that’s responsible for a lot of the inflammation and discomfort that acne can cause. Antibiotics are usually not prescribed alone and work best in tandem with other drugs. Additionally, antibiotics aren’t a long-term solution, as they cannot be taken for too long without their effects wearing off. But as a shock to the bacteria causing acne, antibiotics should usually be the first thing your dermatologist will point to for treating moderate to severe acne.
Now let’s talk about some of the drugs often used in combination with antibiotics. The first class of drugs is called retinoids, and these are very powerful. Retinoids are drugs that are derived from vitamin A, and they help to suppress the skin’s oil production. Without as much oil, acne will often clear up. Retinoids can be prescribed for topical and oral use, with the most well-known version being isotretinoin. Also known as accutane, isotretinoin is a powerful oral medication that can help treat severe and cystic acne. There are possible side effects with a drug like this, and your dermatologist will monitor your health with regular check-ups while you’re taking this medication.
These options are far from your only choices for taking on acne, but they are the best two options for getting quick control of moderate and severe acne symptoms. With these treatments, you can get the upper hand on your acne and ensure that it doesn’t wreak further havoc on your life.
Acne is treatable, but sometimes it takes a bit of trial and error before things clear up. Don’t let acne continue to affect your happiness; give us a call at Northeast Dermatology Associates today and learn more.
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