If you are living with acne, you understand its effects can be more than just physical. Acne can damage your confidence and self-esteem as well.
What Causes Acne?
The cause of acne is not fully understood but there are several factors that are known contributors.
- The overproduction of oil in the skin (sebum)
- A build-up of bacteria in the skin
- Irregular shedding of dead skin cells can irritate hair follicles underneath your skin that leads to acne
- Puberty and hormonal changes can cause changes in the skin that lead to acne
Will Home Remedies Help?
No. The simple answer is no and, in fact some home remedies can make acne worse. For example, home remedies like wiping the skin with rubbing alcohol to reduce the oil is more likely to irritate the surface of the skin making zits more likely to erupt. Harsh soaps and irritants work the same way.
What about Over-the-Counter Remedies?
It depends on the situation. Products like Pro-Active have been used to some success but can also cause dryness, rashes, and irritation. In some cases, it can make acne worse because it irritates the skin's surface.
Most over-the-counter acne medications use benzoyl peroxide, which is designed for mild-acne and works by reducing bacteria on the surface of the skin and causing the skin to dry and peel. These products aren't always effective because acne doesn't occur on the skin's surface. Acne occurs underneath the skin in the dermis, the layer of skin where hair, sweat and skin color originate.
How Do We Treat Acne?
We begin with prescription strength topical medications—medicine applied directly to the skin— depending on the severity of your acne. For severe cases we offer Acutane®, which has been effective but may have serious side-effects. We educate every patient prior to prescribing about a medicine's potential side effects and any precautions the patient should take.
For patients whom topical or oral medication is not a good option, we offer Dusa® Blu-Light treatment. This is a new treatment that in recent trials has shown to be very effective.
The best thing you can do if your acne is persistent is to call and make an appointment. A doctor or nurse practitioner will evaluate your individual case and help form a treatment plan made for you.
Where Can I Learn More?