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Three signs that it's time to see your dermatologist for acne

If you struggle with the embarrassment of acne, you are not alone. This common skin condition affects millions of Americans. It is most common in teens and in adult women. Many people rely on drugstore treatments as their first line of defense. While these products can be effective, they may not be enough. It can be difficult to know when it's time to see a dermatologist. If you are questioning the wisdom of continuing with over-the-counter treatments, ask yourself these questions:

Is your acne getting worse?
It is advisable to seek medical treatment right away if over-the-counter treatments aggravate the condition. This may mean that you are allergic to a common ingredient in acne medication. Alternatively, it may be a sign that you do not have acne. Conditions such as rosacea or contact dermatitis can cause lumps or breakouts, which may be mistaken for acne.

Is your acne failing to get better?
It is important to understand that acne treatment does not yield instant results. Over-the-counter treatments typically take about four to six weeks to achieve noticeable improvement. You will need to follow the directions closely and use the product continuously for optimal effectiveness. If you don't want to wait that long you can visit our office. Even professional treatment will not be instant, but it is often much faster than retail products. Additionally, if you do not see results in a reasonable length of time, you may need a stronger or more customized treatment.

Is your skin condition negatively impacting your self-esteem?
Chronic or recurrent acne can affect your confidence and social interactions. If you feel embarrassed about the appearance of your skin it may be time to see a doctor. According to research reported in the British Journal of Dermatology, the rate of emotional, psychological, and anxiety disorders among acne sufferers was similar to that of patients with arthritis and other chronic health problems.

Is the problem severe?
Nodules and cystic acne can be painful and especially difficult to treat with commercially available products. Cystic acne often leaves permanent scars. It is important to avoid popping or picking at pimples and see a doctor before lasting damage occurs. If you are ready to take control of your acne we are here to help! Call 855-717-1755 (Fremont) or 855-717-1756 (Milpitas) to schedule an appointment.

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