Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

Yasmin for Acne

Yasmin for Acne

Overview

Although many think mostly teenagers get acne, women of all ages also suffer disproportionately from the skin condition. If you're one of them, you can blame your hormones. According to the Cleveland Clinic, male hormones called androgens tend to drive formation of acne. Fortunately, if you're a woman, you also have a women-only solution: birth control pills. Many physicians prescribe Yasmin birth control to combat acne.

Cause

When androgens--male hormones--circulate in the body, one of their functions is to stimulate the glands in the skin known as the sebaceous glands. These glands lubricate the skin by making oil, and too much of this oil causes acne, according to the Cleveland Clinic. Women tend to get breakouts in the last week of their menstrual cycles, as their levels of the female hormones estrogen and progesterone fall, although others see pimples throughout the month.

Features

Yasmin oral contraceptives contain drospirenone and ethinyl estradiol, two forms of female hormones. In most cases, women use it to prevent pregnancy, but it also works well to curb acne in women. As with most oral contraceptives, women will take one pill a day, no more than 24 hours apart. To remember to take Yasmin, it can help to take the pill at the same time every day.

Side Effects

Yasmin, like other birth control pills, can cause some side effects, such as breast tenderness, nausea or other gastrointestinal symptoms, changes in your menstrual periods or even freckles and skin darkening, according to Drugs.com. The American Academy of Dermatology warns it also can make your acne worse initially as your body adjusts to the new hormone regimen, although your acne should level out and begin to improve within several months.

Research

Medical research indicates contraceptives containing drospirenone and ethinyl estradiol can effectively curb acne. For example, a 2009 study published in the "Journal of Drugs in Dermatology" looked at about 270 women with acne who were assigned to take birth control pills or a placebo. After six months, the women taking the oral contraceptive saw a significant reduction in their pimples, leading the researchers to conclude that these types of birth control pills work to reduce acne.

Considerations

Your dermatologist or your ob-gyn may not want to prescribe oral contraceptives for you if you're older than 35 or if you smoke. In addition, women who have had other serious health conditions, such as some types of cancer and heart disease, shouldn't take Yasmin or any other type of birth control pill. If you think Yasmin might help get your acne under control, talk to your doctor about it.

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