Doctor insights on:
What Prevents Acne
Acne is one of the most common skin conditions. It affects about 80% of adolescents. Acne starts as a blockage of the sebaceous glands followed by inflammation. It occurs in areas where there are lots of sebaceous glands, such as the face back and chest. The hallmarks of the condition are blackheads, whiteheads (closed comedones), papules, pustules, cysts, nodules, and sometimes scarring. There are numerous treatments available, both topical and systemic. The most commonly used are benzoyl peroxide, retinoids, and antibiotics ...Read more
Meds: Many patients do well with over the counter benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid preparations. Some patients require topical or oral antibiotics or retinoids as well. If the over the counter meds alone don't control your acne after a month of daily use, see a doctor for additional treatment options. It is important to be persistent, and some patients 'get worse before they get better'. ...Read more
Scientific Rx: Acne is a chronic, non-lifestyle-related, non-hygiene-related, recurrent, serious disease that eventually self-cures. Until then, if you think you are prone to an outbreak, use a salicylic-acid based wash or topical benzoyl peroxide as tolerated. Ignore "pop" ideas and advice. ...Read more
Different options: For over the counter methods try using products that have benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, alcohol, and acetone. For prescription treatments you may be prescribed antibiotics, retinoids or vitamin a derivatives, azelaic acid, oral contraceptives, or spironolactone. Always ask a dermatologist about the possible affects and the risks vs benefits of each treatment. Make sure it's best for you. ...Read more
No: Despite anecdotes and ads, no "holistic" remedy helps much. I start with topical Clindamycin with or without a retinoic acid derivative. If needed after a few weeks, consider adding an oral antibiotic such as Erythromycin or tetracycline / Minocycline as suitable for the individual. Dermatologists have the big guns -- accutane, lasers. Freedom from acne should be a person's right. Good luck. ...Read more
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