Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

How to Treat Acne With the Pill

How to Treat Acne With the Pill How to Treat Acne With the Pill

Overview

Acne is a skin disorder that affects millions of people--young, old, male and female. The website WomensHealth.gov says that acne often occurs when the glands of the skin produce too much oil, clogging the pores. Another cause is a bacterium called Propionibacterium acnes, which can be transferred to the skin when a person touches her face. Acne can be mild or severe, and if treated improperly, it can cause lasting scars. Some people try almost every product on the market, from face washes to creams and gels to no avail. For females, an effective way to treat acne is with the birth control pill.

Step 1

Meet with a gynecologist and dermatologist to discuss your specific health concerns before you start taking the birth control pill. The American Academy of Dermatology says that although oral contraceptives are effective in treating acne, they also carry risks. Birth control pills can increase the risk of blood clots, so women who smoke, are 35 years or older or have any blood-clotting disorders should not use them. Your gynecologist can help you decide if oral contraceptives are right and safe for you. If taking the pill is right for you, either your gynecologist or dermatologist can prescribe it for you.

Step 2

Take birth control pills regularly and at the same time every morning or every evening once you get the OK from your doctor or gynecologist. The Mayo Clinic explains that birth control pills provide hormones that work to reduce the amount of oil that the skin produces. Yet if you don't take birth control pills exactly as directed, you run the risk of bleeding between regular menstrual periods, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Step 3

Use spironolactone, a synthetic steroid medication, in conjunction with birth control pills. When spironolactone is taken with oral contraceptives, it decreases production of the hormone androgen and reduces acne occurrences even more effectively than with birth control alone, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Spironolactone has potential side effects, such as headaches, and you need to ask your doctor or dermatologist for a prescription.

Step 4

Practice good hygiene. Don't touch your skin unless your hands are washed and you are applying a skin-care product. You also don't need to wash your face excessively or scrub too hard. Gently washing your face once in the morning and once at night with a mild, oil-free cleanser is a great way to prevent and treat acne, according to WomensHealth.gov.

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