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Retinoids: Retin-A (tretinoin) has been in use for years, and preparations have become milder and gentler while still maintaining its effectiveness. Newer retinoids include adapalene (Differin) and tazarotene (Tazorac). These medications are especially helpful for unclogging pores. Side effects may include irritation and a mild increase in sensitivity to the sun.
Problems with these drugs can include allergic reactions (especially sulfa), gastrointestinal upset, and increased sun sensitivity. Doxycycline, in particular, is generally safe but can sometime cause esophagitis (irritation of the esophagus, producing discomfort when swallowing) and an increased tendency to sunburn. Despite the concern that the long-term use of tetracycline antibiotics for acne might "weaken the immune system" or induce bacterial resistance, these concerns seem to be unwarranted.: Oral contraceptives (birth control pills), which are low in estrogen to promote safety, have little effect on acne one way or the other.
Cortisone injections: To make large pimples and cysts flatten out fast, doctors inject them with a form of cortisone. Isotretinoin: Accutane was the original brand name; there are now several generic versions in common use, including Sotret, Claravis, and Amnesteem. Isotretinoin is an excellent treatment for severe, scarring, persistent acne and has been used on millions of patients since it was introduced in Europe in 1971 and the U.S.
It should be used for people with severe acne, chiefly of the cystic variety, that has been unresponsive to conventional therapies like those listed above. If taken in sufficient dosage, it should eliminate the need to continue the use of prescription drugs in most patients. The drug has many potential serious side effects and requires several unique controls before it is prescribed.
This drug is prescribed for five to six months at a dosage that has a high likelihood of preventing the return of acne. Fasting blood tests are monitored monthly to check liver function and the level of triglycerides, substances related to cholesterol, which often rise a bit during treatment but rarely to the point at which treatment has to be modified or stopped.
It is safe to take two or three courses of the drug if unresponsive acne makes a comeback. It is, however, best to wait at least several months and to try other methods before using isotretinoin again. Isotretinoin has a high risk of inducing birth defects if taken by pregnant women.
Those who are sexually active must use two forms of contraception, one of which is usually the oral contraceptive pill. Isotretinoin leaves the body completely when treatment is done; women must be sure to avoid pregnancy for one month after therapy is stopped. There is, however, no risk of childbearing after that time.
Even patients who are being treated for depression are not barred from taking isotretinoin, whose striking success often improves the mood and outlook of patients with severe disease. Light treatments: Recent years have brought reports of success in treating acne using special lights and similar devices, alone or in conjunction with photosensitizing dyes.
At this point, laser treatment of acne is best thought of as an adjunct to conventional therapy, rather than as a substitute. Chemical peels: Whether the superficial peels (like glycolic acid) performed by estheticians or deeper ones performed in the doctor's office, chemical peels are of modest, supportive benefit only, and in general, they do not substitute for regular therapy.
These include surgical procedures to elevate deep, depressed acne scars and laser resurfacing to smooth out shallow acne scars. Newer forms of laser resurfacing ("fractional resurfacing") are less invasive and heal faster than older methods, although results are less complete and the procedures may need to be repeated three or more times.
They are inexpensive, safe, and work reasonably well if used properly.: One popular home remedy is to put toothpaste on zits. There is no medical basis for this. The same applies to vinegar. From What is the best skin care routine for acne? These are all good basic skin regimens that may help with the acne battle:Cleanse gently twice daily.
Getting a big, red pimple on your face happens to everyone, but that doesn't mean you have to accept defeat and wait patiently until the blemish goes away. There are many ways to treat adult acne, but first it's important to understand the basics on how and why acne occurs in the first place."We have sebaceous glands in the skin that normally provide moisture and lubrication, but the combination of stress and hormones can form clogs," explains Marina Peredo, M.D., a dermatologist in New York City.
Zeichner says. as they can be known to exacerbate acne, and try to "minimize stress however you can, such as practices like meditation or yoga," he advises. 9. Medicate if necessary. For those who suffer from are often times the way to go. A dermatologist can work with you to find medications that will help treatment in the long-run.
"Isotretinoin, a derivative of vitamin A, is also very effective."10. Use light therapy to zap acne. Instead of going to your dermatologist for red and blue light therapy (which can cost upwards of $100), use an at-home device over a blemish, or over your whole face, for just two minutes.
com $52. 00 11. In a pinch, get a cortisone shot. Have a really big event coming up? Then you probably don't have time to wait and see if your blemish will disappear on its own. Consider seeing a dermatologist for a true overnight cure. "A cortisone shot is an anti-inflammatory, so it treats the pimple itself," Dr.
hopefully without leaving a scar," she says. Of course, this isn't an easy, at-home DIY fix. It should only be administered by a physician, usually a dermatologist, and it is often covered by insurance if you have acne. Pia Velasco is the Associate Beauty Editor at Good Housekeeping, Woman’s Day, and Prevention magazine.
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