Multiple factors go into play as the cause of acne. Excessive sebum (oil) production, which may be hormone related, bacteria (P. acnes), an inflammatory reaction to the bacteria, and a defect in the process of keratinazation (the turnover of skin cells in our pores or hair follicles) all play a role.
Today, there are many effective acne treatments. This does not mean that every acne treatment works for everyone who has acne. Acne treatment does not work overnight. At-home treatment requires 4-8 weeks to see improvement. Waiting for acne to clear on its own can be frustrating, but it is very important to continue to treat the skin to prevent breakouts, and scarring.
People who have mild acne have a few blemishes. They may have whiteheads, blackheads, papules, and/or pustules (aka pimples). A product containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid often helps clear the skin. If you have a lot of acne, cysts, or nodules, (moderate-severe acne) over the counter medicine may not work.
Dr. Mejia and Ashley Hess, PA-C may offer the following types of treatment for acne:
Acne treatment that you apply to the skin: Most acne treatments are applied to the skin (topical treatment). Some topicals help kill the bacteria. Others work on reducing the oil that causes clogged pores. The topical medicine may contain a retinoid, prescription-strength benzoyl peroxide, antibiotic, or even salicylic acid.
Acne treatment that works throughout the body: Systemic medicine that works throughout the body may be necessary when you have red, swollen types of acne. This type of treatment is usually necessary to treat acne cysts and nodules.
- Antibiotics (helps to kill bacteria and reduce inflammation). Doxycylcine and Minocycline are common antibiotics used here at Jupiter Dermatology. Some trade names of the medications are Doryx, Monodox, Solodyn, and Minocin.
- Birth control pills and other medicine that works on hormones that increase sebum production (can be helpful for women).
- Isotretinoin (the only treatment that works on all that causes severe acne). Isotretinoin is also known as Accutane, Zenatane, Claravis, and Absorbica.
Procedures that treat acne:
- Chemical peels: Our Aesthetician here at Jupiter Dermatology uses chemical peels to prevent and treat acne. We offer a variety of treatments from PCA, SkinCeuticals, and Vitality Institite (VI Peels).
- Lasers and other light therapies: These devices reduce the p. acnes bacteria. Your dermatologist can determine whether this type of treatment can be helpful.
- Acne surgery is a treatment performed by our esthetician at Jupiter Dermatology, working under the supervision of a Dr. Mejia. The purpose is to professionally cleanse the skin, extract blackheads and whiteheads and clean clogged pores. Acne surgery helps to reduce current acne outbreaks. Patients receiving acne surgery treatments must continue to follow up with the dermatologist for acne management.