Acne Treatment in St. Louis, MO
Is it really that important to treat acne? Many doctors take a somewhat nonchalant view of acne treatment, because it doesn’t cause any long term health problems and it won’t kill anyone. There are more important issues to deal with—medical problems that can have serious consequences—and they take precedence over the poor patient with acne. A lot of us view it as mainly a cosmetic problem and, therefore, do not feel acne is “important” enough to spend precious time and resources on it.
With the ACA and more and more people seeking medical treatment, acne is going to be even less of a priority for the medical establishment. Is it something that we should even be treating? Do we let adolescents and adults deal with it the best they can and if they scar—they scar, too bad? Is this where the future is headed? The skin care specialists at St. Louis Skin Solutions hope not.
Fighting Back Against Acne
Acne is extremely common affecting about 85% of adolescents. Many doctors and parents view acne as superficial and minor, but its effects can go much deeper than the surface of the skin. It can place a heavy emotional and psychological burden on patients that may be far worse than the physical impact. Studies from all over the world have looked at the effect acne has on self-esteem and self-confidence and have found definitive correlations between acne and anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders.
The evidence is pretty clear—acne has some negative psychosocial effects that can last a lifetime. Therefore, we advocate a serious, thoughtful, and thorough approach to the treatment of acne. Too many patients are simply prescribed a drying agent for their skin and an antibiotic without an evaluation of personal medical history, lifestyle factors, and environment.
While some patients definitely need antibiotics, however, excessive antibiotic usage simply contributes to the ever worsening pattern of bacterial resistance. The truth is, with a little investigation and education, many patients won’t need pills to control their breakouts. Some natural acne treatment remedies might just be what it takes. Given the importance of a successful acne treatment to one’s self-esteem and psychological health, and the need to reduce antibiotic usage, doesn’t it make sense to explore new treatment protocols?
What Causes Acne & How Can It Be Controlled?
The causes of acne are multifactorial and our approaches to treatment should be multifactorial as well. Our specialists learned zinc works to increase retinol binding protein formation in both sexes, which helps Vitamin A to work. Does nutrition play a role in acne? You bet!
We know that hormones also play a large part in the etiology of acne. Androgens stimulate sebaceous gland activity and increase the oiliness of skin. Maybe it is time to look at substances that can block the sebaceous glands’ response to androgens instead of just blocking all of the androgens? Now there is an idea!
We have known for years that exposure to sunlight helps decrease breakouts. Sunlight helps kill the bacteria that can cause acne. Maybe Vitamin D has an effect as well? Sunlight triggers the skin to produce active Vitamin D and recent studies show that Vitamin D helps dampen the inflammatory response generated by bacteria and oil glands in the skin. Exposure to visible light may work other ways as well—ways that we don’t fully understand.
Modern medicine is finally beginning to accept the fact that laser light can be useful for the treatment of acne. Photodynamic therapy, a type of treatment that activates topically-applied medications by visible or infrared light, is continuing to generate interest in the scientific community. Imagine treating acne with light; natural, normal, regular, plain old light.
Of course the oldies but goodies like peels, cryotherapy, and microdermabrasion will always have a place in our armamentarium. Exfoliating treatments, while helpful for acne, are also good for overall skin health and collagen production. A superb daily skin care routine with an exfoliating wash or lotion will help keep pores clear and allow better penetration of any topically applied agents. Antioxidants can act as anti-inflammatories and help you soothe and protect the skin. For more information, check out these helpful videos:
Contact us if you are tired of looking in the mirror only to find new acne. Our treatments are available to patients located throughout the St. Louis, Missouri, area.