Acne Wash Treatment
Acne treatment varies depending on severity and types of acne. Treatments range from basic skin hygiene and mild washes to potent prescription medications. Mild acne sufferers or people with sporadic breakouts may find effective treatment with simply using the right facial cleansers and proper skin habits. Acne wash treatment may involve just a mild cleanser or may include medicated washes with ingredients like benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, acne affects a staggering 85 percent of all Americans at some point during their lives. Acne most commonly occurs on the face, neck, shoulders, chest and back. Most cases of acne are mild, warranting treatment with over-the-counter products like gentle cleansers and medicated washes.
Some dermatologists suggest simply washing twice daily with a gentle cleanser to treat mild breakouts or the occasional occurrence of clogged pores. Practicing proper skin hygiene is often the first step in any acne treatment. Washing twice daily with a mild cleanser may be combined with other treatments, such as medicated creams or prescription pills. Using a gentle cleanser, formulated for sensitive skin, can reduce irritation and prevent the inflammation caused by acne from becoming worse.
The most common ingredient used in over-the-counter acne cleansers is benzoyl peroxide. Concentrations of benzoyl peroxide vary from about 2.5 percent up to 10 percent. Benzoyl peroxide reduces excess sebum, an oil produced by the skin. It also fights the P. acnes skin bacteria that causes acne blemishes. According to MedlinePlus Drug Information, benzoyl peroxide is typically used once or twice daily. Excessive dryness of the skin may occur with benzoyl peroxide treatment.
Cleansers formulated for acne treatment often contain salicylic acid as a mild acne-fighting ingredient. Salicylic acid cleansers typically contain a 2-percent concentration of the ingredient. According to the American Academy of Dermatology's AcneNet, salicylic acid corrects irregular shedding of dead skin cells. This prevents a buildup of dead skin cells and debris, which can cause clogged pores. Salicylic acid may cause mild stinging or skin irritation.
For mild acne, washing with a gentle cleanser or medicated wash may be enough to effectively clear the skin. However, chronic acne or more severe cases of acne may require twice daily cleansing along with other treatments. Whether treating with cleansing alone or in conjunction with other treatments, regular cleansing and proper skin care are a necessary part of any acne treatment program.
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