Here are most questions about acne cream and the answers:
Q: What are OTC acne medicines?
A: OTC (Over the Counter) acne medicines are medicines for treat acne, usually topical, that you can buy without doctor’s prescription. These medicines are available in many forms such as acne cream, gel, lotion, and soap. There are several OTC topical medicines used for mild acne. Each works a little differently. Following are the most common ones:
- Benzoyl peroxide – destroys P. acne, and may also reduce oil production.
- Resorcinol – can help break down blackheads and whiteheads.
- Salicylic acid – helps break down blackheads and whiteheads. Also helps cut down the shedding of cells lining the hair follicles.
- Sulfur – helps break down blackheads and whiteheads.
OTC acne medicines may cause side effects such as skin irritation, burning, or redness, which often get better or go away with continued use of the medicine.
Q: What are the active ingredients usually in prescription acne cream?
A: People with moderate to severe inflammatory acne may be treated with prescription topical or oral medicines, alone or in combination. Several active ingredients in topical medicines such as in the form acne cream are:
1. Antibiotics – help stop or slow the growth of bacteria and reduce inflammation.
2. Vitamin A derivatives (retinoids) – These drugs contains an altered form of vitamin A. Some examples are Tretinoin.
3. Others – may destroy P. acnes and reduce oil production or help stop or slow the growth of bacteria and reduce inflammation. Some examples are prescription strength Benzoyl peroxide, sodium sulfacetamide/sulfur-containing products, or Azelaic acid.
Q: What kind of prescription acne creams side effects will occur?
A: For some people, prescription acne cream medicines cause minor side effects, including stinging, burning, redness, peeling, scaling, or discoloration of the skin. With some medicines, such as Tretinoin, these side effects usually decrease or go away after the medicine is used for a period of time. If side effects are severe or don’t go away, notify your doctor.
Q: Which form acne medicines should I choose: acne cream or acne gel?
A: For people with sensitive or dry skin, acne creams and lotions provide moisture and tend to be good choices. If you have very oily skin or live in a hot, humid climate, you may prefer an alcohol-based gel or solution, which tends to dry the skin.
Q: Besides using acne medications such as acne cream/gel, how should people with acne care for their skin?
A: If you have acne, you should gently wash your face with a mild cleanser, once in the morning and once in the evening with face cleanser that appropriate with your skin type as your personal care routine. Be careful to choose cosmetics, avoid excessive sun expose, and avoid rubbing and touching skin lesions. tretinoin cream uk