Acne Treatment in Dallas, Texas
What is acne?
Acne is a condition in which pores of the skin become clogged. This causes the appearance of bumps and other blemishes of the skin. Acne typically appears in adolescents, but it can also affect babies and patients in their adult years as well.
Where can acne appear?
While acne generally affects regions of the face, it can also present itself in other areas, such as the neck, back, chest, and arms. Symptoms of acne can fluctuate and range in severity from mild to moderate to severe. Mild acne involves minimal symptoms and breakouts that do not occur often. Moderate acne involves more noticeable breakouts that occur on a more regular basis. Severe acne involves breakouts appear as large, irritated, red irregularities of the skin. A consultation with your doctor can help determine the severity of your acne and which treatment options may be best for you.
What causes acne?
Acne occurs when hair follicles become obstructed by oil or dead skin cells. Factors that may trigger or aggravate acne may include:
- High levels of oil production
- Hormone levels
- Certain medications
- Consumption of certain foods
- Direct skin contact with greasy or oily substances
- Direct pressure placed on the face, e.g., holding a cellphone to your cheek
What are the symptoms of acne?
In general, symptoms of acne will often appear on the face. Acne may also appear on other areas of the body, including the arms, back, chest, neck, and buttocks. Depending on the type of acne, along with other factors, symptoms will vary from patient to patient. Symptoms of acne may include:
- Dark spots or scarring after the acne heals
How is acne diagnosed?
To diagnose acne, your doctor will carefully examine your skin to help rule out any other potential conditions which may be causing your symptoms. Once your doctor has determined that your symptoms are the result of acne, your doctor will “grade” the degree of acne. One being a mild case of acne, and four being a severe case of acne. Along with grading the severity of acne, your doctor will also diagnose what type(s) of acne are affecting your skin, which may include:
- Acne vulgaris
- Comedonal acne
- Cystic acne
- Nodular acne
- Acne rosacea
- Acne mechanica
- Acne cosmetica
- Excoriated acne
How to treat acne
Acne treatment is available for baby, childhood, adolescent, and adult acne. Treatment options can be used on the face, neck, back, arms, or other affected areas. Depending on the severity of acne, treatment may vary. For patients with mild acne, non-prescription products may be enough to alleviate acne symptoms. However, some patients may require additional treatments. For patients with severe or persistent acne, your doctor may recommend the following acne medications and treatment options:
- Topical medications
- Oral medications
- Birth control
- Laser therapy
- Chemical peels
- Whitehead and blackhead removal via extraction
- Steroid injections
- Clinical trials
How Common is Acne?
Acne is quite a common condition. Experts estimate that between 80 and 95 percent of the young people aged 12 to 24 experience at least the occasional breakout. This estimate is all-inclusive, accounting for the wide range of cases treated on an annual basis. Knowing that acne is common doesn’t mean that you should not seek clinical treatment if your acne is troublesome. Whether or not your acne is severe, your dermatologist can help you regain clearer, healthier skin.
Are Acne Treatment Results Permanent?
Acne treatments help clear existing acne and reduce the risks of future breakouts. Each may work a little differently, but the objective is often to minimize oil production and bacterial activity within the skin’s pores in the affected area. Some of the treatments that are prescribed to treat acne, such as oral contraceptives, target the underlying hormone conditions that can make it easier for acne to occur. Regardless of the type of treatment your doctor recommends, it is likely that you will need to continue following their treatment plan for some time or risk the return or worsening of your acne. Usually, acne naturally becomes less of a problem once a person reaches adulthood and their hormones reach a state of relative stability. After that time, acne treatment may no longer be necessary.
How Long After an Acne Treatment Will I See Results?
It usually takes at least a few weeks for an acne treatment to begin showing significant efficacy. This is because your body needs time to respond to its topical or oral medication that has destroyed acne-causing bacteria and soothed inflammation. You may begin to notice slight changes as soon as a few days after undergoing some acne treatments. This is dependent on your skin, the severity and type of acne you have, and other factors. You can expect your provider to discuss how you can maximize the results of your acne treatment through specific skincare habits.
Are Acne Treatments Painful?
Acne-prone skin tends to be inflamed and irritated as it is. It may naturally be more sensitive, as well. With this in mind, acne treatments are performed with the utmost care. Most are very mild and free of harsh ingredients or aggressive mechanical techniques. Your provider will discuss what is involved in the acne treatment or treatments they recommend, so you know exactly what to expect. Some procedures, like chemical peels, may feel slightly tingly or may cause some stinging, but these sensations are usually mild and not painful.
What Are the Side Effects of Acne Treatments?
Generally, acne treatments do not have many side effects to speak of. Your provider will prepare you ahead of time for those that may occur with your personal treatment plan. For example, if you undergo laser treatment or a chemical peel, you may experience temporary side effects like redness and itching or dryness that requires some extra moisturizing. If you are prescribed an oral antibiotic or birth control pills to manage acne, you may have a risk of side effects like temporary nausea. The side effects associated with acne treatments are typically very mild and manageable.
Are Acne Treatments Covered By Insurance?
Most insurance companies will cover at least a portion of care for acne when treatment is considered medically necessary. Some of the most common insurance-approved treatments include topical and oral medications. The Dermatology Treatment and Research Center has been providing care to Dallas residents for several years. Our experienced team is happy to answer your insurance questions and help you understand your coverage.
What other treatments are available?
For patients with stubborn or severe acne scars, treatment options are also available. While full removal of acne scars is not always possible, there are options to help reduce the appearance of acne spots and scarring, such as topical creams, microneedling, laser therapy, and more. Speak with your doctor to learn more about which acne scar treatment options may be best for you.
If you are experiencing symptoms of acne that are interfering with your quality of life, a consultation with an experienced dermatologist may be the first step towards helping restore the appearance and health of your skin. At Dermatology Treatment and Research Center, our board-certified physicians hold expertise in clinical, cosmetic, and general dermatology and are ready to provide you with high-quality expert care in a friendly and compassionate atmosphere. Call 972.661.2729 or fill out the form on this page to book an appointment.