In Miami, the land of the "Beautiful People" - where sun and sand mean that skin is always exposed, Dr. Andrea Trowers, Board Certified Dermatologist based in North Miami Beach, helps enhance all of her client's beauty.
Dr. Trowers exclusively addresses many of your biggest skin care questions in our ongoing series of columns. Here's her latest column is one that everyone should read - the best way to prevent a breakout! - RLB
Only retinoids (ex. Retin A, tretinoin, differin or, my favorite, tazorac) work at unclogging those pores. I tell my patient these medicines are like draino for their pores. Every single person over the age of 20 should be on some type of retinoid because long term they can also improve fine lines, skin texture, improve dark spots and in some cases decrease oil production. After the pore is clogged, the perfect environment for propionobacterium acnes (the bacteria that causes acne) to grow and thrive has been created. Your body’s immune response to this overgrowth is inflammation which results in tender red bumps and pustules. Prescription antibiotics by mouth, benzoyl peroxide creams, topical antibiotics, aczone (a new anti-inflammatory gel) and in the worst cases accutane can be used to diminish the degree of inflammation and decrease the amount of p. acnes present in the skin.
After a patient’s acne has been cleared, I tell them that they should stay on a retinoid cream or gel until the day they die or a month prior to starting to try to get pregnant (retinoids are not approved for use while trying to get pregnant, pregnancy or during breast feeding) in order to keep their skin clear. Facials with microdermabrasion are also beneficial when used done every six weeks to two months by a licensed aesthetician familiar with dermatology medications. These treatments eliminate the comedones that retinoids may only be able to loosen.
There is a lot of false information out there about preventing acne. Make sure that your sources are knowledgeable and have the credentials and results to back up what you are being told or sold. And remember that the benefit of having acne as an adult is that otherwise you may not have known about the great creams that can help prevent wrinkles and dark spots after your bumps are cleared!
- Dr. Andrea Trowers
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Office contact info: 10800 Biscayne Boulevard Suite #650 Miami, FL 33161