Acne tips for teen girls and boys

As we all know, teenage acne can put a real damper on things. Following are some tips and guidelines from our dermatologists, to help get through those trying times.

Cleanse your skin twice a day. Avoid scrubbing hard with a washcloth as this can worsen the condition by irritating the skin. Remove any sweat, oil or makeup applied earlier in the day.
Teens tend to get acne in the T-zone of the face (chin, nose, and forehead). Using an oil-free moisturizer can help prevent this.
Avoid letting hair products touch your face, particularly if your hair is long and you use chemicals, perms, etc.
Wash your face after being around oily, hot, humid, or sweaty environments. This includes the kitchen, gym, and our beautiful beaches in Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Newport News, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Outer Banks of North Carolina, Eastern Shore of Virginia and Maryland.
Don’t touch your face, because the oil and bacteria from your hands can worsen your teenage acne.
Avoid the temptation to physically touch your facial acne as this can lead to more irritation and scarring.
Acne medication may cause your skin to look worse before it looks better, and it may be a month or two before you see any signs of progress. After two months if no progress has been made, consult your dermatologist.

Acne begins to show up during adolescence years, specifically the pre-teen and teenage time frame, say our acne doctors. However, it is common for puberty to start later in boys than in it does in girls. This is the reason boys frequently get acne at a later age than girls.

Boys also develop higher levels of a hormone called androgen, which is associated with male traits such as greater muscle mass, deeper voice and body hair. 

Acne on the back as well as the chest is common for boys and tends to last longer. In some cases boys may notice their acne can even be more severe than acne that occurs in girls. Boys who shave may also be at a higher risk for acne breakouts. This is particularly the case with dull or low quality razors as well as not using shaving cream.

Additionally, boys are not as likely to use acne skin care products whereas girls are. This may be due to a lack of awareness of the topical treatments or a lack of comfort to seek help for their skin problems.

Acne treatments available for teenagers

Acne treatments for both sexes are nearly identical in regards to active ingredients, which remove the dead skin cells, bacteria and other factors that cause acne lesions to become inflamed.

Mild acne can be treated with benzoyl peroxide or other over-the-counter treatments found at a local pharmacy in Newport News, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Outer Banks of North Carolina, Eastern Shore of Virginia and Maryland. Normally, a dermatologist will recommend stronger treatments to prevent acne scars such as topical or oral antibiotics, prescription-strength topical retinoid, or both.

Our dermatology clinic will recommend an acne treatment plan based on several factors, including:
• The severity of the acne.
• The presence of acne scars.
• The response to past acne treatments.
• Other medical conditions.

Tips for shaving when you have acne

Boys with facial hair know that shaving with acne can be a challenge. These tips may help minimize skin problems when shaving with acne or severe acne:

• Before shaving, wet the face thoroughly with lukewarm water to help soften the facial hairs.
• Try shaving with electric and safety razors to see which works best for you.
• You should use a sharp razor, as dull razors often lead to irritation and breakouts.
• Shave lightly. Nicking acne lesions can make acne worse.
• Attempting to shave off the acne usually aggravates the condition and makes the acne worse.