Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

The Best Treatments for Getting Rid of Blackheads

The Best Treatments for Getting Rid of Blackheads The Best Treatments for Getting Rid of Blackheads The Best Treatments for Getting Rid of Blackheads

The American Academy of Dermatology defines a blackhead as a non-inflammatory acne lesion that is filled with excess oil and dead skin cells. The definition gives a clue to the best treatments. You need to control the amount of oil on the skin and get rid of dead skin cells that can clog pores. You can do that with proper cleansing, topical treatments, oral medications or a combination of the three.

Cleansing

If you have acne, the easiest way to treat it is a good hygiene routine. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends using warm water and a mild cleanser on acne-prone areas of the skin at least twice a day. You may want to wash more often if you’re involved in sports or exercise. Don’t overdo it, though. If you wash too much and dry out your skin, it may react by producing even more oil.

Topical Treatments

If you have a mild case of acne, over-the-counter topical treatments may help clear up your skin. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends creams and lotions containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. These topical solutions can help dry up oil, kill bacteria and remove dead skin cells. Your skin may become more irritated initially but improve in the weeks to come. If over-the-counter treatments aren’t enough, you may need to see a dermatologist for a prescription treatment.

Oral Medications

If you have a lot of blackheads that aren’t responding to other treatments, a doctor might prescribe a short course of antibiotics. Because of growing concerns about antibiotic resistance, these oral medications are not a long-term solution to acne. The Mayo Clinic notes that doctors usually try to taper off the use of antibiotics as soon as your skin improves. Oral antibiotics help to reduce bacteria and fight inflammation.

Other Treatments

Skin specialists have other treatments at their disposal to control acne, but these procedures also can cause some short-term discomfort and skin irritation. Laser- and light-based therapies may be helpful by attacking the oil glands. Chemical peels and microdermabrasion work on the skin’s surface.

Don’ts

Whatever you do, the American Academy of Dermatology advises you should never pop, squeeze or pick acne. It can make acne worse and make it last even longer. There’s also a risk of scarring.

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