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Topical Retinoids: Acne Treatment Medication
- Many effective acne skin care products contain retinoids
- Tretinoin is one of many acne treatment related cosmeceuticals and is an example of one of the most effective retinoid-based acne treatments on the market
- It’s important to be cautious when opting to use topical retinoid-based acne treatments because they increase the skin’s sensitivity and likelihood to become irritated, making sensitive skin care even more important when considering this acne treatment method
- Topical retinoid creams will also increase the skin’s sensitivity to ultraviolet light, thereby increasing the risk for developing sun damaged skin. For this reason, it’s good to couple use of these products with a rich skin moisturizer
Topical retinoids, or retinoid treatments, have long been used in effective acne treatment medications. Though effective, they are often associated with skin irritation and are not always tolerated well. With advancements in research, scientists have been able to modify the chemicals used with retinoids to cause less irritation without losing the effectiveness of the retinoids.
Tretinoin is a form of retinoid that is most commonly used in these topical acne treatment products and is by far the retinoid of choice because of its strength. With this strength, however, comes a greater risk of skin irritation. New formulations have added compounds to the retinoid that help give the topical ointment a time released effect. This allows the user to get the dose at a slower rate, which reduces the risk of irritation.
Another topical retinoid used as an acne treatment in many retinoid creams is adapalene. Adapalene is a manmade retinoid designed to be more selective. It targets affected areas of the skin and releases medicine to the areas that need the most attention. This reduces the chance for irritation by focusing on the areas that need help and by not affecting the healthy skin around the trouble areas. Most skin irritation when using retinols involves damage to the surrounding healthy skin.
All of these forms of retinoids are available only by prescription written by your doctor or dermatologist. These medicines have always been expensive; however, tretinoin is now available as a generic drug, so the cost for this treatment has been reduced. Tretinoin is thought to be the most powerful retinoid on the market, but it also has the greater incidence of skin irritation.
All of these retinoids are known to increase the skin’s sensitivity to sunlight. With all the known information about protecting your skin from the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun, there is no excuse for not using a sunscreen, though it is especially important when using retinoid topical treatments for acne.
For the teenager who is experiencing the sometimes disastrous results of acne, any medication that can help the condition is welcomed. It’s tough enough being a teenager, and anything that separates a person from the norm opens them up to teasing and ridicule. The teenage years are a very precarious time and the effects of acne can be life changing.
There are many products on the market today that help alleviate acne breakouts and flare ups. Many over-the-counter treatments are now effective in treating acne. As a parent, have your child try non-prescription solutions to the problem before taking the step up to the more powerful retinoid based treatments. While these treatment methods are usually effective, they are much more dangerous and must be monitored by your doctor or dermatologist.
Acne need not be the problem that it has been in the past. With all the treatments available on the market today, there is no reason to suffer from acne breakouts. Retinoid acne treatments, coupled with a good daily skin care routine, can minimize the effects of the acne condition.
The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.
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