Acne Treatments

What is Acne?

  • 90% of teenagers are affected by acne
  • Acne is hereditary-this means your acne was passed down from your parents and grandparents
  • Acne is caused by several different factors including: bacteria, hyperactive oil glands, and hormones; other factors may include pore-clogging make up
  • Treatment should be initiated as soon as possible to prevent any permanent scarring

Myth #1: Acne is caused by the food you eat.
Fact: There is no evidence that diet influences acne production.

Myth #2: “Popping” the pimples will make them go away.
Fact: Squeezing the pimples will actually make the acne worse as it can lead to infection as well as scarring. Patients should never pick at their pimples!

Myth #3: Acne is caused by poor hygiene.
Fact: Acne is not caused by lack of washing and can actually be worsened by washing your face too often. Your face should be washed once in the morning and once at night.

Myth #4: Acne only occurs in females.
Fact: Acne occurs in both males and females, and is often more common in males because of the male hormone androgen which increases oil production.

Myth #5: Acne can be cured.
Fact: As of yet there is no cure for acne. However, there are numerous treatment methods to control it effectively.

Myth #6: Treatment for acne is just cosmetic; it’s ok to wait it out.
Fact: If acne is not treated promptly, it can lead to severe acne scarring which can be permanent.

  • Topical antibiotics and Retin-A creams
  • Oral antibiotics and retinoids (Accutane)
  • Hormonal therapy including oral contraceptives
  • Lights sources including Blue Light and Intense Pulse Light (IPL)
  • Mild chemical peels
  • Acne washes as well as mineral cosmetics which are non-comedogenic (do not produce acne)

To treat current acne and to prevent scarring. Acne treatment should be initiated immediately to prevent permanent scarring. However, scarring can be corrected by various treatments including chemical peels, microdermabrasion, laser treatments, and surgery.

Acne Treatments

Treating acne involves decreasing or removing one or more of the contributing factors listed below:

First the hormone levels are evaluated by an endocrinologist or dermatologist. Next prescription drugs that counteract the male hormones(eg Aldactone) are used to treat the acne.

1) Accutane:  Accutane is a drug that is used by dermatologists for several months in cases of severe, scarring acne. It often produces dramatic results and helps to decrease the amount of oil produced by the hair follicle.

2) Topical Drying Agents: Products that are applied to the skin usually work by absorbing the oil and can also be helpful.

1) Oral Antibiotics: Although antibiotic treatment works well, many patients find it difficult to be on antibiotics for months or years. Some of the side effects are also difficult to manage.

2) Topical Antibacterial Agents: benzoyl peroxide is one of the most popular treatments. This ingredient is found in many over the counter and prescription medications. When products for acne are sold on TV or in the supermarket, the ingredient is usually benzoyl peroxide. Benzoyl peroxide is found in many of the products sold in our stores and has been used for decades to treat acne. While it is not a cure, it is effective for many people.

3) Salicylic Acid: Salicylic acid is a mild antibacterial and has the added property of being keratolytic (it unblocks pores). Many of the popular products available on this site as well in drug stores and infomercials contain this product.

Remember that a board certified dermatologists is always the best person to consult when trying to determine what treatment is best for your needs.