The healing process of acne treatments is always a lengthy and uncertain one.
But technology and medicine has progressed so much these days that we no longer have to sit around waiting for time to work its magic.
Besides the 8 common acne treatments we’ve discussed in this article, here are 4 innovative acne solutions you can consider adding to your acne treatment plan.
Also known as light therapy, red light and/or blue light (typically LED) are used to reduce activity in the sebaceous glands so they produce less sebum that clogs up hair follicles. Blue light specifically targets acne-causing bacteria whereas red light works on inflammation and redness in the skin.
It is highly effective on mild to moderate acne since it works well against inflammation and bacteria. Phototherapy can be administered by your doctor or on your own at home. However, medical grade phototherapy may be up to 10 times more effective than using cheap home-based equipment. It is safe for most people to undergo but make sure to protect your eyes from the light or avoid entirely if you have underlying eye conditions. It can cause skin dryness as well, so remember to moisturise your skin after treatment.
2. Chemical Peel
Chemical peels can be used to regenerate skin and treat blackheads, whiteheads and superficial acne scars. It can be tailored for mild or moderate or severe cases of acne. Treatment is conducted by a trained doctor and consists of the application of a chemical solution to exfoliate the skin.
Special care is needed if you are using vitamin A creams while on this treatment.
There may be a hot sensation on the treated area for 5 to 10 minutes after treatment. Unlike phototherapy, this treatment has a higher risk of scar formation (for deep dermal peel) if your skin is not taken care of well post-treatment. Skin redness or peeling may occur depending on the chemical peel used and there is a slight chance it may affect your skin’s melanin.
However, this treatment is very effective in removing dead skin cells, unclogging hair follicles and reducing pore blockages. On average, up to 4 sessions may be required to deal with your acne problem.
3. Laser Treatment
This category of aesthetic treatments may be helpful for more severe cases of acne, especially where scars are prevalent. Laser treatment kills off acne-causing bacteria and helps reduce the effects of inflammation.
Light energy is used to remove existing scar tissue and then to stimulate collagen and promote healthy skin cell growth.
Because different lasers are needed for different acne scar types, it is good to seek advice from an expert to reduce your risk of hyper-pigmentation and infection. Book a consultation with Dr. Elias Tam to discuss the best laser treatment for your acne condition.
4. Steroid Injection
You know that ugly, mountainous pimple on your face that would take topical medication three years to penetrate?
Steroid injections can resolve these bulbous nodules and cysts within a few days.
A steroid injection (also known as cortisone injection) is basically an injection of a synthetic hormone to relieve inflammation and shrink large cysts.
The shot is injected directly into the nodule or cyst with a small amount of steroid and its effects occur immediately.
Your doctor may drain the sebum from the cyst before injecting it.
Although largely painless, the side effects of this treatment include thinning of the skin at the injection site, scarring, lightening of the skin or systemic effects when too much of the steroid is injected and therefore absorbed into your body. However, these side effects are rare in acne treatment use.
However, this should be an occasional treatment, a last resort for specific cysts and nodules, rather than a regular procedure of your acne treatment plan.
For more advice on a personalised acne treatment plan, do consult Dr. Elias Tam at EHA Clinic.
With continuous improvements in technology and research done on acne everyday, you don’t have to be held back by acne anymore!