ZocdocAnswersWhat can I do to get rid of my acne?

Question

What can I do to get rid of my acne?

I am a 20 year old female who never had any acne during puberty. For the past year, though, I have been breaking out on my face, and now my back and chest also has acne. I have cut out caffeine, and I have begun using Clearasil acne pads for the past two months, but I do not see any signs of it going away. What can I do to get rid of my acne?

Answer

Acne, although very common during the hormonal changes of puberty, can occur at other times during life. However, when someone has a drastic change in their skin such as you are describing, it is important to see your primary care doctor or dermatologist to determine that it is indeed acne that you are dealing with as there are other skin conditions which can resemble acne. Your doctor will be able to give you the appropriate diagnosis and discuss skin care and treatment. In the meantime I would suggest some basic acne solutions. Wash your face twice a day with a gentle cleanser such as Cetaphil. Try using an acne fighting body wash such as Neutrogena to help with your back and chest. Use an over the counter acne product that has salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. Use sparingly as this can dry out your skin. Avoid the sun and use a moisturizer that contains SPF. Acne that does not respond to these basic steps often needs to be treated with prescriptions, topical, oral or sometimes both. Some women notice that their acne gets much worse around their menstrual cycle due to hormonal effects. In this case certain types of birth control can help. It is important never to pick at your skin as this can lead to scarring which is permanent.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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