Questions

Adult acne

Question: Hi, I'm 21 years old and have recently (within the past 5 months) had a terrible outbreak of acne. When I was in my teens, I used topical Benzaclin once at night and it kept my face fairly clear. However, my acne has become much worse as of late. I began taking Minocycline, 100mg twice daily 5 weeks ago, but haven't noticed much progress. (I know it may take some people 2 months to see results). I also began using benzaclin EVERY time after washing my face, so that I would always have a layer of it on, even under my makeup. I went to the dermatologist today, told her about my lack of progress, and she prescribed Duricef, 500mg twice daily, and also suggested slowly easing my way into retin A by putting it on for 2 minutes (OVER my makeup) at night and then washing it off and going to bed. So my questions are: Will switching antibiotic regimens slow the process of improvement? If it takes 6 weeks for results from Duricef, does that mean 6 weeks from today, or is there a chance that since I've been on minocycline for 5 weeks that I will begin to notice improvement fairly soon? --My other question is, will going to bed with nothing on my face (after placing the Retin A on my skin for 2 minutes then washing it off to prevent acne flare up/irritation) make my skin worse? Lately I've been loading on the benzaclin (even though I've been told by many this doesn't necessarily do anything) out of pure fear that more ugly zits will be waiting for me in the morning. Thank you for your help, and I really would appreciate any insight onto how I may go about improving my condition, as it has caused me great emotional trauma to the point where I am now on anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications.
Answer:

Minocycline and Duricef although both prescribed to treat acne are not from the same class of antibiotics to my knowledge therefore they treat acne a bit differently. Switching antibiotics may in fact slow your healing process, however not being highly educated on both of these antibiotics personally I am not certain. However if your skin is already improving somewhat, even if it is not visually then I don’t think see your skin starting back at square one.

Unfortunately you will not know if just using the retin-A and not using the Benzaclin will work until you try it, results are different with each person. Most dermatologists know what they are talking about, I’d trust your dermatologists suggestions until you see that they don’t work. But keep in mind that many times acne can worsen with the start of new products, this is simply your skin purging, or cleansing itself which is good.

Acne is a massive issue, realistically almost every single person will experience some time of acne at one point in there life. I’ve been acneic my whole life, however I’d learned how to control it by experimenting with products and seeing what works best for me. I’ve learned that salicylic acid works best for my skin, as it does with many others skin compared to benzoyl peroxide. Although salicylic acid may take longer to see results, it is treating the acne at the cause of the problem, not just diminishing the symptoms and leaving the real issue behind. I also feel its very important to treat your skin from the inside out and follow a good diet. Plenty of water, daily supplements to help fight acne. I’m using a supplement called Akne Zyme which has been helpful. You already sound like you are religious about your regimen, but I like to stress that it is an every morning every night job. Forgetting or simply being lazy about your regimen will not help you or your skin. I hope this helps, please feel free to contact me if you have further questions. Best skin care wishes.

Meagan, Esthetician