How to Reduce Acne
Acne is a skin condition that is identified by the manifestation of pimples, papules, whiteheads, blackheads, nodules and/or cysts. These lesions are unsightly, and they can cause scarring if the acne condition is not properly treated. What causes lesions such as these to erupt is an overproduction of oil called sebum, which is produced by oil glands under the skin. Acne can be reduced, but the process may take some time.
Treat mild acne with a cleanser that contains salicylic acid and is oil-free. Cleanse your face two times a day with this cleanser, or use soap your doctor recommends accordingly. Treat your skin gently when washing it. Do not rub your skin hard, and do not use abrasive cleansing pads on your skin, as doing so can make acne worse.
Purchase a topical acne medicine from a drugstore (with or without a prescription) if your acne is mild. Use it according to the instructions given. You should be putting the topical acne medicine on the lesions and on the affected areas. Four frequently used acne medicines that can be purchased over the counter include benzoyl peroxide (used to lessen the production of oil and to wipe out propionibacterium acnes), resorcinol and sulfur (used to help eliminate blackheads and whiteheads), and salicylic acid (used to help eliminate blackheads and whiteheads and reduce cell shedding in hair follicles).
Avoid touching your face needlessly to prevent contaminating your skin and do not try to extract lesions. Have a trained esthetician extract blackheads and pimples, and go to her for an acne facial one or two times a week.
Use make-up that will not exacerbate your acne condition. Do not use make-up that contains oil. Look for products that state they are non-comedogenic or non-acnegenic, as these will not clog pores.
Keep your hair clean so your skin is free of oils that may make acne worse. Wash your hair with a shampoo that is non-comedogenic or non-acnegenic.
Consult with your doctor if your acne condition is moderate or serious. He may prescribe a topical medicine, an oral medicine, or both. Topical medicines often recommended and prescribed include antibiotics (used to lessen inflammation and arrest bacteria growth, or slow its pace), retinoids (used to reduce and clear blackheads) and extra-strength benzoyl peroxide. Two commonly prescribed oral antibiotics are tetracycline and minocycline. Do not be alarmed if acne symptoms get more severe before improvement is seen. Your doctor may give you an injection to treat cysts that are large and inflamed, or he may drain or remove the cysts if the medication prescribed does not work.
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