Acne treatment Acne treatment

How to Clear Up Back Acne

How to Clear Up Back Acne


When talking about acne, most emphasis is often put on the face. However, the conditions of the back, such as sweat, constant rubbing of clothing, and less time and attention spent to washing it, often make the back a prime spot for acne breakouts. When these occur, there are a few different treatment options that are available.

Step 1

Try an over-the-counter (OTC) product. OTC acne products are often the cheapest and most accessible treatment for those suffering from back acne. OTC products are especially helpful for those with only a mild to moderate case. Common ingredients to look for when shopping for an OTC acne product are benzoyl peroxide, sulfur and salicylic acid.

Step 2

Talk to your doctor about prescription-strength acne products. When OTC medications are not enough to clear up back acne, prescription products may be available with higher levels of active ingredients. It is important to follow your doctor's instructions for using these medications to avoid potential side effects or skin damage. Common prescription medications for acne include tretinoin, tazarotene and adapalene.

Step 3

Try a series of antibiotics. According to the Mayo Clinic, more serious cases of acne may require a short series of antibiotic treatments. Antibiotics help kill off the bacteria that are causing the back acne breakouts to occur.

Step 4

Consider laser therapy. Laser therapy is usually reserved only for those who do not respond well to traditional medication therapies for back acne. Laser therapy involves using the intensity of a smoothbeam laser to kill the offending bacteria hidden within the breakout areas of acne. According to the Baylor College of Medicine, the results of laser therapy for back acne can last up to two years.

Step 5

Try light therapy. Light therapy is the use of Intense Pulsed Light, or IPL, that emits a broad spectrum of light to heat the middle layers of the skin. Like laser therapy, this heat kills off the bacteria that cause back acne breakouts. Numbing cream is usually applied to the area before the procedure is performed to help dull any pain from the procedure. Side effects, though mild, may include skin flaking and the lingering feeling of a sunburn for three or four days following the procedure.

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