Acne treatment Acne treatment

Solutions for Bad Acne

Solutions for Bad Acne Solutions for Bad Acne

Even the most mild cases of acne often prove difficult to treat. Sufferers may want to put off visiting a physician to save money or because of embarrassment. However, the physical and emotional pain of severe acne warrants an immediate examination by a dermatologist. Seeking treatment quickly also reduces the chance of scarring. Additionally, dermatologists evaluate the type of acne and possible contributing factors to treat each case according to each individual's needs.


Antibiotics primarily reduce inflammation and fight the bacteria that causes acne, making them effective at treating moderate to severe cases of acne. Antibiotic treatment lasts for up to three to four months. According to the Mayo Clinic, a doctor will likely terminate treatment if the the skin fails to show signs of improvement within this time frame. To avoid antibiotic resistance, dermatologists typically begin tapering the antibiotic dosage once the skin shows signs of improvement. Additionally, applying benzoyl peroxide, a topical over-the-counter acne medication, reduces the risk of developing antibiotic resistance. Side effects of antibiotic treatment include upset stomach, dizziness or skin discoloration, as well as increased sun sensitivity. Also, antibiotics may reduce the effectiveness of birth control pills.


Severe cystic acne or acne that has failed to respond to other treatments may warrant treatment with isotretinoin. This potent drug effectively treats acne because it treats the four factors that cause acne--clogged pores, oily skin, bacteria and inflammation. According the the American Academy of Dermatology, the results achieved from isotretinoin therapy last for many months to years, with only one course of treatment necessary for most patients. Isotretinoin comes in the form of a pill, taken once or twice daily for four to five months. Dermatologists use caution when prescribing isotretinoin, often resorting to it last, because treatment comes with possible serious side effects, including severe chest pain, trouble swallowing, severe headache, bone and joint pain, nausea, vomiting and depression. Women of childbearing age must use two reliable forms of birth control to avoid pregnancy because of the high risk of severe birth defects.

Corticosteroid Injections

Intralesional corticosteroid injections reduce the size of very large or cystic acne lesions. A part of severe acne treatment, dermatologists use this method to prevent cysts from rupturing and causing increased pain and permanent scarring. The diluted corticosteroid lessens inflammation and promotes healing over a three- to five-day period.

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