Face Treatment for Acne
Mild to moderate acne typically responds to a combination of self-care measures and topical medications. Washing the face twice daily, coupled with an over-the-counter acne cream or a prescription retinoid, can often improve your complexion. But moderate to severe acne is sometimes more difficult to treat, and you may want to seek out other treatments. Discuss the best option for you and your skin with a dermatologist.
While cosmetic procedures are typically used to reduce fine lines, wrinkles and age spots, they can also treat acne. Chemical peels and microdermabrasion have shown promise in clearing complexions, according to the Mayo Clinic. Both facial treatments remove the surface layer of the skin, which loosens blackheads and decreases the papules associated with acne, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.
Phototherapy can also help to improve acne. These facial treatments use light or laser energy to penetrate the surface layer of your skin, where deeper obstructions form. The Mayo Clinic explains that energy from the light reduces bacterial build-up by killing the pathogen responsible for acne, while laser energy reduces your skin's oil production, which can contribute to breakouts.
You may respond favorably to facial treatments that involve the extraction of the soft plugs causing your breakout, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. A soft plug is composed of dead skin and excess oil that accumulates in a pore. This causes an obstruction that leads to inflammation of the hair follicle. When the plug is extracted, the cause of the comedone, papule or pustule is removed.
Facial treatments aren't without their own consequences. Besides helping to clear acne, both chemical peels and microdermabrasion can lead to blistering, scaling and skin discoloration, cautions the Mayo Clinic. Phototherapy can cause pain and even burning and redness. If done improperly, extraction can result in infection and scarring.
Most of these facial treatments are more costly than standard acne care, and some are still in their infancy. The long-term benefits may not outweigh the cost, so consider exhausting other forms of treatment before using any one of these procedures.
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