How to Get Rid of Acne

How to get rid of acne.

The best way to treat or cure your acne depends on how persistent and severe it is.

Cures and Treatments for Mild Acne

Most people who have acne suffer from mild acne. This condition can usually be treated with acne supplements and other over-the-counter (OTC) medications, which can be bought at a pharmacy or health food store without a doctor’s prescription.  Supplements are usually in the form of pills, while other treatments are called topical medicines, as they are typically applied to the surface of the skin and/or the acne itself.

Most acne supplements contain vitamins, minerals and other herbs and nutrients – such as Vitamin A, B, E and Zinc – known to help support healthy skin, as well as assist the immune system detoxify the body and fight acne. Many of these supplements do not have side effects as the body flushes away any excess nutrients.

Over-the-country (OTC) products for topical applications may contain active ingredients such as:

  • Resorcinol – a crystalline phenol that helps break down blackheads and whiteheads.
  • Benzoyl Peroxide – a white crystalline peroxide that works as a peeling agent to reduce the bacterial count in the affected area and slow down the glands’ production of oil.
  • Salicylic Acid – a white crystalline substance that is also used as a fungicide. It helps break down blackheads and whiteheads, reduces shedding of cells which line the follicles of the oil glands, and helps treat inflammation and swelling. Salicylic acid also causes the epidermis to shed skin more easily and prevents pores from becoming blocked while at the same time allowing room for new cells to grow.
  • Sulfur – a yellow crystalline solid that has been used for centuries for treating acne, psoriasis and eczema. Sulfur helps break down blackheads and whiteheads by oxidizing to sulfurous acid and acting as a mild reducing and antibacterial agent.
  • Retin-A – an acid form of Vitamin A which helps unplug blocked pores and combat skin aging. It also acts as a chemical peel.
  • Azelaic Acid – a saturated dicarboxylic acid found in wheat, rye, and barley that  strengthens cells in the follicles, stops oil eruptions, and reduces bacteria growth and inflammation. It is useful for patients with darker skin who have dark patches on their face (melasma), or who have acne spots that leave persistent brown marks.

You can buy OTC acne medications in gels, soaps, pads, creams and lotions. If your skin is sensitive, you may prefer a cream or lotion. Gels, which are usually alcohol based and tend to dry the skin, are better for people with oily skin.

Another thing to remember is that OTC medications will have ingredients in different strengths. This is why it is advisable to start with the lowest dosage or amount. You may experience skin irritation, redness, and/or burning when you first apply them to your skin. These side effects usually go away after continued use. If they don’t go away, stop using the product and see your doctor.

Cures and Treatments for Severe Acne

If your acne is more severe, not only should you consider dietary supplements with vitamins and minerals – as well as diet and lifestyle changes – you should consider seeing a dermatologist. As a skin specialist, a dermatologist may prescribe a treatment that contains some of the active ingredients mentioned above, such as benzoyl peroxide, azelaic acid, as well as adabalene. Prescription medications for acne are presented in many forms, such as creams, lotions, etc. Your dermatologist will decide what is best for you.

You may be prescribed an oral or topical antibiotic. Antibiotics can combat the growth of bacteria and reduce inflammation. Most commonly Erythromyocin and Tetracycline are prescribed as antibiotics for the treatment of acne.

Oral antibiotics are frequently prescribed for patients with moderate to severe acne. The goal of oral antibiotics is to lower the population of Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes), a bacterium commonly found on the skin, which will multiply rapidly in blocked follicles. The dosage will be initially high, and then as the acne symptoms abate, the dosage will be reduced. Antibiotics are usually not taken for more than six months. As time passes, the P. acnes can become resistant to the antibiotic and another antibiotic is needed.

If you have cysts, dermatologists normally treat them with an interlesional corticosteroid injection. If an acne cyst becomes severely inflamed, there is a high risk of rupturing. A rupturing acne cyst can often result in scarring. The specialist may inject a diluted corticosteroid to treat the inflamed cyst and to prevent scarring. The injection will lower the inflammation and speed up healing, usually causing the cyst to “melt” within a few days. Isotretinoin, a strong oral retinoid, may also be prescribed for the treatment of severe cystic acne, as well as severe acne that has not responded to other medications and treatments.

Another acne treatment is oral contraceptives. The majority of women with acne find that taking certain oral contraceptives clears their acne up. Oral contraceptives suppress overactive glands and are commonly used as long-term treatments for acne in women. If a woman has a blood-clotting disorder, smokes, has a history of migraines, or is over 35, she should not take oral contraceptives without consulting with her physician first.

A dermatologist may also prescribe topical antimicrobials for patients with moderate to severe acne. As with oral antibiotics, the aim of topical antimicrobials is to reduce P. acnes populations. Typical topical antimicrobials include clindamycin, erythromycin, and sodium sulfacetamide.

Finally, another option a dermatologist may prescribe is called a topical retinoid. Topical retinoids are a derivative of Vitamin A and are very popular for the treatment and cure of acne. They unclog the pores and prevent whiteheads and blackheads from developing. Some examples of topical retinoids that are prescribed in the USA include adapalene, tazarotene, and tretinoin.

Skin Care Tips to Help Treat and Cure Your Acne.

  • Wash your face about twice each day. Use warm water and a mild soap. Or use a soap made for people with acne. Do not scrub your skin. Also you may consider using an OTC lotion which contains benzoyl peroxide.
  • Do not try to pop your pimples. You may push the infection further down, causing more blocking and making the redness and swelling worse. Popping pimples also causes scars.
  • If you simply must get rid of a pimple for some important event – such as a wedding, photo or public appearance – ask a specialist to treat it for you.
  • Make every effort to refrain from touching your face with your hands. When you are on the phone, try not to let the receiver touch your face as there may there may be sebum and skin residue on it.
  • Keep your hands clean, wash them regularly.
  • Always wash your hands before touching your face. This includes before applying lotions, creams or makeup.
  • Clean your glasses regularly as they will collect sebum and skin residue.
  • If your acne is on your back, shoulders or chest – try wearing loose clothing. Your skin needs to breathe. Avoid tight garments, such as headbands, caps and scarves. If you have to wear them, make sure they are loose-fitting and cleaned regularly.
  • Only use makeup that is nonceomedogenic or nonacnegenic – you should be able to read this on the label.  If you cannot find it, ask. Use makeup that does not have oil and does not clog up the pores and do not go to sleep with makeup on.
  • Keep your hair clean and away from your face. Hair collects sebum and skin residue.
  • Limit your exposure to the sun. Too much sun can cause your skin to produce more sebum. Also, many acne medications will make you more sensitive to the sun and cause you to sunburn easily. So wear sunblock at all times.
  • If you shave your face, be careful. Use an electric shaver or safety razors. If you use a safety razor, make sure the blade is sharp. And remember to soften your skin and beard with warm soapy water before applying the shaving cream.

 


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