By Dr. Elizabeth Rostan at Charlotte Skin & Laser
Acne will affect most adolescents at some point. I am often asked by parents about early acne treatment. In the pre-teens and early teens, many kids start to develop small acne bumps or clogged pores typically in the T-zone. My approach to these cases is to keep things as simple as possible. Often just a medicated cleanser such as one that contains benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid or glycolic acid is all that is needed to control these early manifestations of acne. Another advantage is that the use of the cleanser starts to teach the pre-teen/early adolescent the importance of a skin care routine. These cleansers can be a bit drying so a non-comedogenic moisturizer may be needed.
As a second step, a benzoyl peroxide containing gel or pad can be used routinely or just as a spot treatment for blemishes. These are great first steps and the building blocks of any prescription acne program. If the above regimen does not control the acne or if the acne worsens, then evaluation by a dermatologist is recommended. There is no benefit in treating acne when there is none as these treatments do not prevent acne from occurring; however, early intervention at the first signs of acne may prevent more severe flares which can be associated with scarring and social stigma.
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Charlotte Skin & Laser
130 Providence Road, Suite 100
Charlotte, NC 28207