Acne Solutions

Whether it’s mild, moderate, or severe, acne is difficult to cop with regardless of your age.  Fortunately, there are acne treatment options to help reduce the frequency and severity of occasional or ongoing breakouts in acne prone skin.

What is Acne

Acne is caused by the buildup of excess oil, dead skin cells, and bacteria that clog pores and cause inflammation of the skin.  Commonly known types are whiteheads and blackheads, which appear as open black clogged pores or red inflamed and infected comedones on the surface of the skin. 

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, over 50 million people in the U.S. have this skin condition and more than 80% of teenagers having an acne occurrence.  Most acne types are considered mild to moderate.  However, there are some individuals that experience deep, painful, inflamed nodules or cysts that characterize severe acne. These may be dark red or even purplish in color and can often leave scars.  Treating severe acne should be left to dermatologists. Your doctor will know the best route to take to reduce the risk of scarring as much as is possible. 

Causes of Acne

It doesn’t seem fair, your best friend doesn’t have a blemish anywhere, but your face is covered in pimples and blackheads. What caused your bad acne? Is it bad genes, or do you not wash your face enough. Many factors contribute to acne and its severity.

  • Skin Care Routine: Excessive oil and a buildup of bacteria can cause acne.  Wash your face twice a day. If you have naturally oily skin, your skincare products should help reduce oil, helping reduce acne. You also need to make sure you are using products that will kill bacteria.
  • Hormone Changes: Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do about this one. As the body goes through puberty, menstrual cycles, or midlife changes, hormones fluctuate. For reasons not entirely understood, this causes breakouts in many people.
  • OTC: One of the most common ways to help treat acne and clear your skin is to use an over the counter product containing salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide.  These ingredients are very effective at acne treatment.
  • Diet: A poor diet, one rich in fatty foods and high in processed foods and carbohydrates, is thought to contribute to acne or, at the very least, worsen breakouts.
  • Medications: Some prescription medications have been proven to cause or worsen acne breakouts. For example, men and women who regularly use steroids for bodybuilding are more prone to severe acne.

These are just a few of the many factors that can play into your susceptibility to acne. Science continues to study breakouts and possible causes to aid in treating and preventing these painful, ugly bumps. Keep reading to discover ways to get rid of acne.

How To Get Rid of Acne

Once your dermatologist makes an assessment, they will make a treatment recommendation based on your age, skin type, and level of inflammation. Treatment could include oral medication, topical medication, or a combination of both. For those with more severe acne, laser treatments may also beneficial.  Some common medicines used as bad acne treatments include:

  • Oral and topical antibiotics
  • Steroidal creams and oral steroids
  • Topical Benzoyl Peroxide Rx
  • Topical Salicylic acid Rx
  • Topical Retinol
  • Change of skin care routine.

Be patient. Unfortunately, no treatment will make your acne go away overnight. Skin takes time to heal and even with prescription medications, expect to wait 2-3 months until you see significant improvement.  However, there are some options to improve your mild acne or moderate acne sooner. 

  • Steroid Injections: Your doctor injects a steroid under the skin of the nodules.
  • Professional extraction: a licensed practitioner or esthetician uses tools to remove the infected material from your skin and apply solutions to reduce inflammation.

Acne Home Remedies

There are a few things you can do at home to start improving your skin today.  Start by washing your face twice daily daily with a cleanser that is both gentle, ideal for your skin type, and consists of all natural plant based ingredients.

Moisturize daily.  This is important because if you only cleanse and never hydrate your skin, your body may produce more sebum in order to satiate the need for moisture.  Excess sebum contributes to acne.  Moisturizing daily does not cause more acne.

Use over the counter creams with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid to help treating acne.  It may take a little longer than you want, but over a few weeks, you should notice your skin showing signs of healing.

Things to Avoid

Prevent breakouts from spreading by following these tips:

  • Eliminate or reduce use of oil based lotions and makeup. Makeup and other cosmetics that contain oil can worsen acne.
  • Picking at bumps and zits may make acne worse.  Attempting to pop pimples can cause the infection below the surface of the skin to spread, leading to more acne.  Picking at zits also contributes to acne scars.
  • Limit touching your face throughout the day. Your fingers may have germs on them, even if not visible.


You may not be able to completely stop a bad acne breakout from occurring. However, you can stay informed and know how to treat it. If your acne is severe and involves deep cysts with pain, you should visit a dermatologist and let them help you with your acne.

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