Many of us have experienced acne in our lifetimes or are currently experiencing it. We all know what it’s like to have a breakout at the wrong time or all the time – or wake up with that dreaded pimple when you’re about to do something really important. But how do you know when to give up on the treatments you’ve been using and see a dermatologist?
OTC Treatments Stopped Working
There are many over-the-counter treatments for acne, and most are quite effective. Those containing either benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid are the most effective, especially in teens. If you were using these treatments and they worked but then stopped, it’s time to look for new treatment options.
It’s Getting Worse
Whether you are currently treating your acne with OTC medications or not, if you are noticing your acne getting significantly worse, it might be time to see a specialist. There may be an underlying medical cause for the acne, such as an infection or hormones.
Soreness or Pain
Certain types of acne can be painful, and unfortunately, those are the types also most resistant to OTC treatments. To effectively treat the condition and relieve much of the soreness and pain you are experiencing with your acne, work with your dermatologist on a customized treatment plan.
Widespread, severe acne can damage the skin permanently. If you already see evidence of scars, you want to see your dermatologist right away. By treating the condition and preventing future breakouts, it can also minimize additional scarring. There may also be treatments available to lessen the visibility of the scars, if caught early enough.
If you’ve never experienced acne before, but you have a severe breakout all of a sudden, it could be a sign of a different skin condition. Acne pimples are pretty common, but other conditions could cause spots that look very similar. However, the underlying cause and treatment are very different, and OTC treatments may not be effective.
Your Acne is Affecting Your Self-Esteem
Acne doesn’t only affect our skin. It can also affect our self-esteem and body image. This isn’t only true for teens, at least 85% of which will experience acne. Adults who experience persistent acne can sometimes feel self-conscious of their appearance.
If you are still struggling with acne, even after trying several OTC treatments, let Medical Dermatology Specialists help. We can determine the underlying cause for your persistent acne and create a successful skincare routine with the most effective medications.
Posted on behalf of Dr. Jamie Weisman, Medical Dermatology Specialists, Inc.
Medical Dermatology Specialists, Inc.
5730 Glenridge Dr, Suite T-100
Atlanta, GA 30328
Monday – Thursday 7:30 AM – 5:00 PM