Acne Treatments. Over The Counter Medication

Treating your own acne is the most common way to deal with it and most acne outbreaks are mild enough that non-prescription acne treatment medications, will work fine

Common acne treatments available over the counter.

Most acne outbreaks are mild enough that over the counter, non-prescription medications, will work fine.

Simply combine these acne treatments with a good skincare routine and they will do an effective job of clearing up most forms of acne in as short a time as possible.

Over The Counter Acne Treatments

Over the counter acne treatments include …

1. Benzoyl Peroxide …

One of the most common and most effective treatments possible for mild acne, benzoyl peroxide is used daily by millions.
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  • It works by helping combat the bacteria that is partly responsible for acne in the first place.
  • It also helps to remove dead skin cells from the area.
  • If those don’t move to the surface where they can be sloughed or washed off, they can accumulate, upping the odds of getting acne.
[/lists] Benzoyl Peroxide has been in use for decades so the pros and cons are well known.
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  • One possible side effect is excessive drying of the skin.
  • It can also bleach fabric, and so should be used with care if you are dressed when treating your acne.
[/lists] The risk of any side effects can be minimized by using the proper amount.

If a 2.5% concentration is working, don’t assume that 10% is better or will work faster. A higher dosage only increases the odds of side effects occurring, without any compensating rise in treatment value.

2. Salicylic Acid …

This is the active ingredient in aspirin and part of the reason that this simple compound is sometimes called a miracle drug. It has many uses and is safe and effective, when used properly.
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  • It often comes in the form of soaked pads, and the salicylic acid helps break down blackheads and whiteheads. It slows down the process of shedding dead skin cells inside the follicle, making build up and compaction less likely. It also helps remove them.
  • This helps prevent bacteria build up in the sebum (skin oil) inside the pore.
  • Salicylic Acid, should not be combined with other treatments, unless recommended by your dermatologist. Excessive skin irritation can occur.

3. Resorcinol …

Resorcinol is another popular OTC medication and is effective in many cases, especially when combined with other compounds such as sulfur.
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  • It functions by breaking down hardened skin, leading to more effective removal from the follicle and the area outside.
  • This also lowers the odds of clogging, a major factor in acne formation.
  • Resorcinol should not be used in conjunction with astringents such as alcohol.

4. Alcohol and Acetone …

Both of these common acne treatments are safe, but are generally much less effective than more modern acne treatments.
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  • Alcohol is a mild antibacterial and helps remove oil from the skins surface.
  • Similarly, acetone is a degreasing agent and helps keep the surface clear.
  • But the excess oil (sebum) that contributes to acne lies well under your skins surface where it becomes a growth medium for bacteria and helps clog pores.
  • Removing surface oil is of limited benefit.
[/lists] The small savings made, over other more expensive treatments, is generally money wasted, except as part of an overall skin care regimen.

Be sure to use over the counter acne treatments and medications in the manner directed in the instructions.

If acne persists for more than a couple of weeks, or grows worse, see a dermatologist. He or she may recommend a stronger treatment, such as an acne prescription medication.

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