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joe peeps

My Story

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So I am going to try to explain what happend to me in terms of acne and scarring starting at the age of 13 and hopefully if you know a lot about this stuff you can maybe help me out with my dillema.

So this all started at 13, I started getting acne, by 14 it was also on my chest and back, and by 15 it was on my neck, chest, back, and legs and was pretty cystic and unsightly and bad. My mom finally took me to a derm at age 17 and I did 5 months of Accutane and it wiped out the bad scarring quality acne for the time being. I didn't really understand the whole concept of acne scars so I went off to college and got on with my life.

So my acne came back and in the same places except not as bad and when I was 20 I bought a book called The Acne Cure and it had a chapter on acne scarring. I read it and then went to my bathroom and realized I had scars on my temples, side of face, and neck. This upset me massively but in time i forgot about it.

So then I graduate college and get a real job and when I was 23 and hated my job and became very, very, deeply depressed. At first it was an existential thing but then it became about the acne/scars. Just wondering how bad they are, what can I do about the acne, and if I looked ugly or not. I told 2 relatives about it and they told me that I was being way too dramatic and that they were not very noticible. One relative said that I was like an anorexic girl who looks in the mirror and sees a fat person, only I saw big scars. I went to a therapist and she said she couldnt see any scars at all but the lighting was kind of soft. She told me I was just depressed. I went to a Fraxel consultation and they told me they could make them 50% better and then I found this forum and it seemed like the doctors were bull shitting me because it seems like the consensus here that Fraxel is a cruel hoax but I still hope it's not. At my consultation after the doctors left the nurse said "you know Joe, your scars are pretty mild." I was gonna get Fraxel but then I went on a vacation with friends to Miami and we had so much fun that I completely forgot about my scars for like literally 4 years, until this summer.

So for what ever reason I am thinking about them again and also my moderate acne which continues to be on my face, neck, upper legs, ass, chest, and back. I am really really depressed. I want this acne to stop and I want to improve my scarring but I am so scared that there is no hope and I'll just have to accept it. I want to get Fraxel but I am afraid it might just not do anything. Also, I am 27 and I want to have kids in my thirties but I feel guilty about passing on my putrid acne genes. Someone please give me some advice because obviously I am worrying out of control over here.

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Sorry to hear that! But do you mind to post a pic here? So we can help


I feel better everytime I look out the window on a sunny day. Won't you?


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Acne is a very tough battle and in my opinion, the cruel scars that follow serve as a reminder of the tough battle and create an even tougher battle.

The thing with moderate to severe scarring, there's no denying if you have it. I look in the mirror and my light to moderate scars don't bother me that much but it's the severe scarring that has completely consumed my life for the past 3 years. It's taken over my thoughts, my plans, my character and my confidence. I think if you yourself need an acne book to tell you that you have scars, your troubles aren't that bad. Your acne problem sounds worse than your scars though.

Maybe go on another round of accutane but have the advice of atleast 2 derms before you do that. Fraxel restore is GREAT for very mild cases of acne scarring but does virtually nothing for severe scarring unless you have 10 sessions would could set you back a small fortune.

Are you white, brown, black? White skin is the best for scar treatments but being brown myself, I have to tread very carefully with treatments. I've had 5 fraxel restores and a vbeam treatment.

I know it's tough and it can get so depressing when people around you tell you that it's not as bad as you think it is and you know what, a think most genuinely believe what they're saying but it's different living in the skin that "isn't that bad".

Do a lot of research mate. Don't rely on clinics to give you all the info and especially for the side effects parts.


SCARS SUCK :(


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Yes I think my acne might be worse than my scars at this stage. I am working on the diet to see if that is a factor but I also made an appointment with a derm and I am just going to do whatever they tell me to. I have pale english/irish like skin so hopefully it will respond well to laser treatment when I decide to get it. One thing the Dr. said to me was "maybe you should come back in 5 years when we have something better available", well it's been 4 years and change and it seems like nothing is really out thats better.

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in your diet: try to eliminate dairy completely, avoid high glycemic food. scar treatments - I personally think that lasers are a sham/rip-off; from my research, the only effective treatments so far are: needling, dermarolling (slow process), punch techniques (excision, subcision, punch graft, punch float), maybe re-cell

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I feel your pain. You could try hyaluronic Acid pills, they sort of help with rolling scars and plump your skin to make it soft. In my experience with taking them is that my lips were not chapped anymore, it helped a little with the lines around my eyes. What I also noticed is that when I got off of them for two weeks, my rolling scars were so much more noticeable, that's how I know that it did help a little bit. I know I need a permanent approach to this too but I don't have money to pay a derm for treatments that may or may not work.


Female
Cystic acne
Started Accutane Sept.7th 2006
As of February 07.I am done with accutane and am clear.

Update: July 2007
Skin is oily again but not 1 pimple
Update: Scars: apples of cheek pock marks and rolling scars & one huge box scar!
Feeling: eeh

Update: 2013

Wow, its's been 6 years since I have been to this site. Lot's of changes.

popcorn.gif


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I would never do derma rolling because it seems like it could case damage in the hands of an amateur and I would never have a tattoo artist treat my acne scars with needling, I think that is absolutely insane. Fraxel is the same principle as dermarolling so how could you say that it is a sham and derma rolling is not? I am still holding out hope that the Doctor was right and that Fraxel can give me a 50 percent improvement.

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My doctor promised me that he could give me atleast 60% improvement with 5 fraxel restores and yeah, for my very minor scars and healthy skin, there was a great improvement but for my pitted scars about a 15% improvement and for rolling, about 30%. Skin texture improved quite a bit also.


SCARS SUCK :(


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My doctor promised me that he could give me atleast 60% improvement with 5 fraxel restores and yeah, for my very minor scars and healthy skin, there was a great improvement but for my pitted scars about a 15% improvement and for rolling, about 30%. Skin texture improved quite a bit also.

how bad is your scar? and by skin texture, can you describe a bit more detailedly? thanks.


I feel better everytime I look out the window on a sunny day. Won't you?


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I would never do derma rolling because it seems like it could case damage in the hands of an amateur and I would never have a tattoo artist treat my acne scars with needling, I think that is absolutely insane. Fraxel is the same principle as dermarolling so how could you say that it is a sham and derma rolling is not? I am still holding out hope that the Doctor was right and that Fraxel can give me a 50 percent improvement.

I'm not encouraging you to any procedures. And I do agree that it's better to be treated by a professional. In fact, I think almost everything seems a bit insane when it comes to scar treatment; the whole idea of "damaging" the damaged/scarred area (maybe except for fillers). But the thing is, that lasers are super expensive, unpredictable, and that is what the dermatologists mostly recommend/insist on. And just on this forum there seem to be few people that actually had some good results with it. That's why I'm sceptical. And I wouldn't trust any promises with how much improvement you can get. Only time can show you that.

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I would never do derma rolling because it seems like it could case damage in the hands of an amateur and I would never have a tattoo artist treat my acne scars with needling, I think that is absolutely insane. Fraxel is the same principle as dermarolling so how could you say that it is a sham and derma rolling is not? I am still holding out hope that the Doctor was right and that Fraxel can give me a 50 percent improvement.

i'm NOT telling you what you should do, i am not a doctor, but i felt compelled to reply because i personally, and others, have had good results with dermarolling... i've also done saline injections too. i've seen great improvement. you can read about it in my post. in my honest opinion, and others agree, lasers are only good for superficial scars. i had a fractional laser (it was a clinical trial though) about 4 years ago. wasn't impressed. for deeper scars you either need to naturally fill them in, i.e. dermarolling/saline injections or use dermal fillers to plump up the depressed areas, or maybe subcision, or probably a combination of all of these things. good luck!

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I am just so confused and I don't know what to do. Obviously I am aware that I have acne and I need to get rid of it but I feel like I'm gonna have to wait for awhile to get scar treatment if I go on Accutane, and I still think that acne might possibly be entirely due to a bad diet because of the studies in Paraguay and the Pacific Islander natives. I feel like we are all just victims of this rediculously stupid unhealthy western diet. I mean look at obesity, it is obviously a result of an unnatural, insane diet. Why not acne? And I don't even know how bad my scars are or or if they make me unnattractive to women or if I would even be more attractive if I did not have acne scars. I worked with a girl at a restaurant who had mild acne scars and out of the 30 or so waitresses there she was unambiguously the best looking one. She would not be more attractive if she did not have scars, and she was much more attractive than certain woman who have pristine skin. So who knows maybe I look okay. It's frustrating that all of these things that we worry about and are so depressed about are going to be such an easy fix in like 25 years or less. I realize this post is like completely rambling and all over the place but this is just how I am feeling at this time.

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you may be right about the diet. since I started the no dairy, low glycemic diet + no citrus fruit (I noticed I always get cysts after oranges), + a lot of vegetables + daily gentle care (no picking, moistuirising with cataphil and jojoba oil, washing with cetaphil, occasional aspirin mask for exfoliating) I've been clear almost all the time. I only get 1/2 zits before period now. Oh, and I try not to stress out...

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I don't know about the diet so much...I really think sometimes it's just the luck of the draw. Genetics play a huge part in it I'm sure. I have a little brother who has a dark olive complexion (my Dad has Irish decent) and he had very bad acne like me and is now left with bad pitted scarring and I have an older brother, fair, pale skin who has never even used a cleanser who has flawless skin!! Hate him! My Mum will always say my younger bro and I have Dad's skin (my Aunty on Dad's side has acne pits too) and my older brother got Mum's. I have girlfriends who would sleep with makeup on, never cleanse, smoke, eat crap, and never have a pimple...I really do think it can be genetic but we must make the most of what we have and diet may help you. .Goodluck with your journey!!

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acne runs in my family. it was only til i changed my diet to raw veganism, when my acne went away, ACNE IS NOT GENETIC! Just teach your kids to eat raw fruits and veggies. And don't give them milk or dairy products, it causes acne.

There are parts of the world that experience no acne at all in many generations. They didnt eat proccesses junk/with chemical additives, and therefor have no acne.

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I don't know about the diet so much...I really think sometimes it's just the luck of the draw. Genetics play a huge part in it I'm sure. I have a little brother who has a dark olive complexion (my Dad has Irish decent) and he had very bad acne like me and is now left with bad pitted scarring and I have an older brother, fair, pale skin who has never even used a cleanser who has flawless skin!! Hate him! My Mum will always say my younger bro and I have Dad's skin (my Aunty on Dad's side has acne pits too) and my older brother got Mum's. I have girlfriends who would sleep with makeup on, never cleanse, smoke, eat crap, and never have a pimple...I really do think it can be genetic but we must make the most of what we have and diet may help you. .Goodluck with your journey!!

This is a very big misconseption. We eat the same things our parents do, i mean, they raised us. We pick up on the same habits..so we will end up looking like them. My mom has terrible skin, her whole face is red and she eats a bunch of junk food. If i ate the way she did, i would definitely end up looking like her. Baldness, diabetes, cancer, etc. it always boils down to the way your family eats. and if you continue to eat the way your family does, you will experience the same problems.

DNA can only determine eye color hair color skin color, it CANNOT determin your health.

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If something is genetic, it means it runs in the family and you can be pre disposed to it. Diet does not impact that much. If you are prone to scarring more, then diet is not really going to change that. Some people will burn quicker in the sun, some people will tan, diet can't change that so if you have the type of skin that will scar that's the way it is. Eating won't play a major role in changing that.

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But that isn't the only contributing factor...what about lifestyle, hormonal imbalances, stress ect? They all play a part too

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I have to agree with you, nessie. Even though I know diet contributed to my acne, I think hormones and genetics had a lot to do with it. If diet were everything, then everyone would break out and have terrible skin because the typical American diet is loaded with saturated fats, gluten, preservatives, sugars, dairy, etc. So genetics predispose people to being sensitive to these things. Not everyone is going to break out because of their diet.

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Thanks Starlite. Everyone is different and some people may break out due to a bad diet, some may break out due to stress, others due to different hormones ie bc pill, some things will trigger acne in some people while in others it will not. To say everyone is the same and if you have a great diet that equals a great complexion is not true. It over simpifies things a tad. Skin is so complex and everyone is unique. What works for some people may cause others to react badly. I know healthy diet can make you a healthier person, absolutely, but acne is so complicated.

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No one has ever proved that acne is not entirely caused by a certain diet. The studies done on native populations definitely suggest that it is. Take a look at peanuts for example, for most they are harmless/healthy, for others they are deadly. Who cares if you have the peanut allergy gene, just avoid peanuts. Why is it so hard to believe that this is not the same thing going on with acne. In Western countries we eat the nastiest food. The most logical explanation for the cause of severe acne is that it is caused by something in the diet that can and should be removed. This is just what I think, and nobody has neither proved or disproved it.

"to say everyone is the same and that if you have a great diet you will have a great complexition is over simplifiying it a tad"....

...you don't know this for sure, no one does.

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I definitely agree with you that dermatologists have collectively dismissed diet as possibly a huge contributing factor to acne. If a poor diet alway caused acne, however, then most of the United States would have problems with acne, because most people in our country have a poor diet. A person would need to have a genetic predisposition to food sensitivities for this to make any sense. So allergies/etc. make a person genetically predisposed to breaking out, just like something like Irritable Bowel Syndrome would make another person genetically predisposed to being sensitive to gluten. Not everyone gets horrible indigestion from eating wheat, just like not everyone will break out with cystic acne from eating dairy.

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Agreed! I think alot of it has to do with hormones and stress. That's why if you go on a certain bc pill your skin can break out in the most severe way. Nothing in your diet or lifestyle can change but if you change your hormones one tiny bit...watch out! Look at some pregnant women...some get that beautiful pregnancy glow others break out terribly both because their bodies are undergoing the most dramantic changes hormonally...both out of their control. If diet had that much of an influence, wouldn't we see 10 yr olds who are being fed a high fat diet (lots of takeaway, softdrink, sugar, lollies, chocolate) with acne too?? We don't! Kids, teenages and adults can have the worst diets and still never get a pimple!

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I think it's all connected - genetics, diet, lifestyle, hormonal changes, age. In my opinion genetics predisposes you to certain diseases (intolerances) that may get activated at a certain age with particular stimulants, in particular circumstances . It's like with all the other diseases, e.g. if you are born with a weak heart, you may react badly to some things like effort, while it will be completely harmless for others; and with age it may get worse, and if you are aware of your condition, predisposition, you may protect yourself from harmful stimulants and be fine; many conditions develop at a certain age, e.g. lactose intolerance (more common with adults)

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