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Dirty Room

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My 18 year old son's bedroom is dirty. I mean really dirty (clothing on the floor, not dusted, moldy pizza, dirty bathroom, etc.) Rather than argue I make him responsible. I have noticed that when he is in his room he will sneeze. I am certain that is related. His Acne problem seems to flair up at times. I can't say for sure that it is caused by spending time in there or not. I can't imagine it is helping. We have a plan - together we are going to clean it once and for all, but I was wondering if there is any info that relates acne to environments like that. Thanks.

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I doubt it.

Don't put your son through a lot of nonsense - my parents did the same thing, telling me that my acne was due to factors related to my lifestyle. Lemme tell ya, that was a bunch of shit. Them prolonging my treatment caused more damage than getting it treated professionally right away - take him to a derm and see what options are available.

Am I bitter toward my parents about all of this..yeah, I am...and that was YEARS ago....I still love them but they should not have been so against the idea of seeking professional help for it.


before you judge me take a look at you

can't you find something better to do

point the finger, slow to understand

arrogance and ignorance go hand in hand

- Metallica, "holier than thou"


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Thanks Eviqrex - for you reply and thoughts.

My son has been going to a derm for two years now. In fact, we are trying a 3rd derm- doing our best to find someone that he is confident with (I think we have a good one this time).

My son has used most every over-the-counter and RX out there. I think part of the problem is not 100% unlike him room - meaning he doesn't keep after it. So there will be days where he will miss his RX, forget to use one of the creams, etc. I can imagine it is all a pain to an 18 year old.

As his Dad I am trying my best - to support his independence and at the same time to help him with his acne which really troubles him. I going to keep the whole "clean room" idea low-key and simple. I am just trying to find any way possible to help my son.

I do appreciate your thoughts.

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Your son has a dust allergy, like me. Ask your doctor about Clarinex or Allegra (NOT Claritin - it does nothing for sneezing). Acne is not from the dust. Also, it's important to get a pillowcase that doesn't let dust through, but still breaths. Your doctor should tell you about it.

Here's what my mom used to say to teach me to be responsible: "I don't care whether or not you clean your room, it's your life. I'm successful already, and you can choose to follow my example, or not. Up to you."

Your son needs to realize that he's the one responsible for his own life, not you, and the best way to do that is to leave him alone.

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I'm a few years older than your son by the way, and my room is dirty when I'm back home from college. It's hard to make myself clean it, I want to, and I feel guilty when I don't, but it's hard. I'm reading a book right now that's helping me. It's basically a book for people who are depressed, and I'm not, but it provides helpful strategies for anyone who feels discouraged or sluggish. "Feeling Good" by David Burns.

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I have noticed that when he is in his room he will sneeze.

[image removed by sigbot--see board rules]

Fist in the air, in the land of hypocrisy...


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Thanks Eviqrex - for you reply and thoughts.

My son has been going to a derm for two years now. In fact, we are trying a 3rd derm- doing our best to find someone that he is confident with (I think we have a good one this time).

My son has used most every over-the-counter and RX out there. I think part of the problem is not 100% unlike him room - meaning he doesn't keep after it. So there will be days where he will miss his RX, forget to use one of the creams, etc. I can imagine it is all a pain to an 18 year old.

As his Dad I am trying my best - to support his independence and at the same time to help him with his acne which really troubles him. I going to keep the whole "clean room" idea low-key and simple. I am just trying to find any way possible to help my son.

I do appreciate your thoughts.


before you judge me take a look at you

can't you find something better to do

point the finger, slow to understand

arrogance and ignorance go hand in hand

- Metallica, "holier than thou"


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Hi DantheDad,

I am always impressed when parents get on the net and show that they are interested in helping their kids address their skin issue. If only more parents were that way.

Acne is not caused by poor hygiene. Having said that poor hygiene can exacerbate acne and good hygiene routines (ie: regular twice a day cleansing, acne treatment, clean hands, not picking, changing pillowcases and clothes frequently etc) will definitely help. As for your sons room - Unlikely to be worsening his acne. But absolutely won't be helping his general health if there are irritants, dust mites, mold spores hanging about. They typical list of environmental factors that can worsen acne (NOT cause it)

Environmental factors such as:

High humidity causing swelling of the skin

Cosmetics especially certain moisturisers, foundation and pomades (watch out for lanolin, petrolatum, vegetable oils, butyl stearate, lauryl alcohol and oleic acid)

Petroleum oils

Pressure from headbands & chin straps (eg: "fiddler's neck")

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Hey Evigrex, teplo and Frances:

Thanks very much for your comments and ideas. They all make sense.

I am going to do the "clean your room" thing as a simple, easy-going, helping hand (I have an excuse - I bought my son a desk for his lap top so I need to set it up). We are also going to go through his old clothes together (donate them) and get him a few new things for school.

All is all I do honor the concept that he deserves his privacy. He accutally seems a little happy that is going to get a fresh clean start.

Thanks everyone!

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My room isnt dirty, but it is quite dusty. I always try to leave the window open to help get some air flow and try to cut down on all the dust. I dont sneeze or anything when i go in my room, just everything gets dusty frequently. Anyhow, I have noticed that when i shut my window my acne seems to flare up. Because of this, i always try to keep air flow because it can get very stale. So in my experience, it can affect acne, though obviously isnt the main cause.

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