The pus-filled inflammation on your skin, that we know as acne, is a struggle for many of us. Fortunately, with the help of a dermatologist, you can get acne treatment to understand the underlying cause and finally make your skin behave in a healthy way. There is no one size fits all in acne, hence varied treatments are available. A dermatologist will customize your treatment after a detailed consultation, examination and some diagnostic tests. Read on to find out more.
How does Acne Treatment Work?
In the essence, acne treatments work by reducing the amount of sebum produced by the oil glands, suppressing inflammation surrounding the affected area, and killing acne-causing germs (known as P. Acnes bacteria) at the same time. In most cases, almost all of the treatment works rather quickly and you can expect to see initial results within days, and full results in about eight weeks. Since acne is a multi-faceted issue, clearing up acne completely is varied depending on the person and the number of factors within your particular acne issue.
The varied solutions available for treating acne largely depend on a number of factors such as the possible cause of your acne, the type to treat, the severity of your acne issue, as well as the number of times you’ve been having it.
Generally, doctors will recommend first-timers, teens, or a mild case of acne with gentle acne medications such as topical treatments. These are easily available in the form of spot treatments with benzoyl peroxide, tea tree oil, or salicylic acid, and they come in different concentrations to suit with your acne problem.
Sometimes when mild medications aren’t enough or your acne issue is serious (such as cystic acne), your doctor might prescribe topical medications such as retinoids that are useful in treating moderate-to-severe cases of acne which are strict prescription only medications. Examples of retinoid medication include Retin-A, Differin, and Avage.
Yes, oral medications in the form of antibiotics are also available for treating acne. And they’re usually prescribed when mild topical medications are not working. Sometimes your skin specialist doctor will prescribe these in conjunction with other prescribed topical medications to boost the effectiveness of the overall treatment. Hence, you can expect to get antibiotics if you have moderate-to-severe acne, and they work to kill excess germ-causing bacteria.
In some cases when prescribed antibiotics also don’t work for your acne issue, your doctor will prescribe anti-androgen medications that work by inhibiting androgen hormones that influence sebum production. These medications reduce the amount of sebum produced.
Oral contraceptives are also used in treating acne, especially in women planning to use the medication for contraception. The synthetic hormones in the medication work to reduce sebum production and this, in turn, reduces the severity and frequency of acne breakouts. This type of treatment takes some time for the results to appear and usually combined with mild topical medications for effective treatment.
In Clinic Treatments
Apart from topical and oral medications, therapies can be exceptionally helpful and usually used together with their prescribed medications for effective results.
Such therapies include prescribed skincare routines such as chemical peels that are available at reputed skin clinics. This type of peel is similar to the ones available in skincare products but with a higher concentration that works deep into the layers of the skin by dissolving dead skin cells and drawing out acne and impurities from the pore, and this treatment works from mild to severe cases of acne.
Drainage and extraction treatments are available to draw out acne cysts, whiteheads, and blackheads that are not cleared up with medications. As tools are used mechanically to draw out the said impurities, this procedure can potentially cause scarring to the skin and it should be done by professionals.
We try to self-treat or acne forever, scouring for blemish creams and spot treatments on beauty shelves. At the end of it all, trying to control acne and zits seems like an endless cycle. Consider this option of visiting a dermatologist to consult about your acne issues. With the right medications and skin treatment, you could get a clear and flawless skin in as little as 8 weeks!