There is no getting around it. If you have acne, you need to take care of it. If over-the-counter treatments don’t help, a dermatologist can provide stronger medications and therapies. Don’t hesitate to get help for acne. It is not worth the wear and tear on your skin and your self esteem. The sooner you get professional help, the less likely you are to have scarring.
Medication prescribed for acne does a number of things at once. It helps to reduce oil production and it counters bacterial infection which helps to reduce the redness associated with acne. You may receive oral medication, topical medication, or a combination of both. Your dermatologist will know how best to prescribe for your needs.
Topical medications are usually applied daily to clean, dry skin. Antibiotics are used as a topical treatment. They kill skin bacteria and diminish the redness.
Retinoids are another topical treatment that are used once a day, though sometimes the treatment starts out by applying three times a week. Retinoids and antibiotics are sometimes used together. The antibiotic is applied in the morning and the retinoid is applied in the evening.
Results can be expected about four to eight weeks after starting this treatment. Sometimes your skin can look worse before it starts to clear up. Persevere, the results will be worth the time spent.
Oral medications also include antibiotics such as tetracycline drugs. Often these medications are tapered off as signs of acne clearing start. Sometimes oral and topical medications are used in tandem.
Women and adolescent girls are sometimes treated for acne with oral contraceptives that combine estrogen and progestin. They may also be treated with an anti-androgen drug .
For those with the most severe acne, isotretinoin is sometimes used. While it is very effective, it also comes with severe side effects and your dermatologist will need to closely monitor you while you take this drug
Treating and clearing up acne is important and necessary for both physical and emotional reasons. Be advised, you are in this for the long haul. It can take months or years to completely clear up acne. It can be a long process, but it is worth the fight.