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After Accutane - Update



It's been almost two weeks since finishing accutane and I wish I could say it's been brilliant but it hasn't. On Christmas Eve, a few days before I was planned to take my last pill, I got a spot. I couldn't believe my luck, weeks and weeks with clear skin and I suddenly had a massive one between my eyes a day before Christmas. That one burst and was drying up by Boxing Day, and then a few days later I got another one. Now I've officially been off my accutane for almost two weeks and yesterday I felt another spot emerging on my chin. I covered it in Retin-A and it seems to have went down a little but I can't believe that they're still popping up cry.gif I see my Dermatologist at the end of this month so she can check how I'm doing, but the last time I saw her she said she wouldn't put me back on accutane if they started coming back by the time I saw her because my body would need a break (which I don't understand, surely it would be better for me to go on for an extra 2 months than wait a few months and go back on it for another 4 months). I'm so upset and angry, I've cried almost every day, normally when I'm trying to get to sleep and I start thinking about stuff. I've felt so down over the Christmas; where normally people would put on a few pounds over the festive season I've lost 4 or 5lb. I don't really know how but I have been exercising more in an attempt to de-stress and I've lost my appetite. Whenever I feel a spot coming up I find myself feeling down and sick. I have three scabs from past spots on my face and I know there's gonna be more to come. I feel so hopeless, if it's only been a few weeks since stopping accutane, what about in a month? A year? I'm going to be back to square one. I could see the finishing line on the horizon, I could almost touch it, and acne is dragging me away from it. I've found myself having very disturbing nightmares, and reality isn't much brighter; I feel I can't get away. Whenever I have a day feeling confident the next day my body seems to compensate by making a spot appear and making me feel like crap, like I'm not allowed to ever feel good about myself and I'm always going to be ugly. I feel insecure, not knowing whether these spots are a temporary glitch or an inevitable future. I think I need to talk to a specialist or someone because I'm so low at the moment. I'm not a religious person at all, yet I've found myself praying in my head whenever I cry, asking for them to disappear. Sorry for the depressing rant but I just needed to get it all out. Nobody understands how I feel at home because nobody has had acne like me, but I know here lots of people are in the same boat.


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Awww. Renn, sorry to hear it's played out that way. I imagine it's pretty disheartening because I know how good your skin was looking and I know how great it made you feel. Best we hope that's just a coincidence as your body adjusts. The drug stays in the system for up to a month after finishing anyway so it will have carried on working to a degree.

I understand what you're saying about wanting to get straight back on it for a little while if needed, rather than take a break and then start from scratch in however many months. What you're saying makes complete sense and I certainly think you should push for that when you see your dermatologist, or perhaps see if you can get to see them sooner if that's at all possible. Am I right in saying that they ended your course earlier than initially planned? If so, perhaps that could explain it. Perhaps the Accutane hadn't totally finished doing its thing yet.

I guess it's hard to tell what's happening and how it will pan out and no doubt that's a source of anxiety for you but do be sure to focus on the positives. As it stands, the odd spot here and there doesn't have to be a big deal. I understand your fears in terms of what they might be signalling and if it could be the start of worse to come, but there's not much point in worrying yourself about something which hasn't happened yet and may not actually happen at all.

Don't forget that, even after Accutane, the same rules apply in terms of looking after yourself and your body and treating your skin with care. See if you can relax, especially if it's messing with your head and upsetting you as much as you say, That's probably not going to do your skin any good but more importantly, it's no good at all for your well-being and you've got to take care of yourself. You've every right to be happy, to feel good about yourself and to be comfortable with who you are. You're not ugly in the slightest so don't put yourself down. This certainly isn't inevitable and however it plays out, it will go your way eventually. That being said, I'm really hoping that it will go your way in the here and now and that whatever your skin is doing at the moment is just a passing phase.

It sounds to me like you need to take a step back because it sounds like there's a sense of desperation there which perhaps wasn't even present prior to starting Accutane. It makes sense in a way. After all, if Accutane was a positive step and was kind of billed as being the fix to your problem, it's logical that it would freak you out if there are signs of things going backwards. I just wouldn't be so sure of that because, as I said, the Accutane's only just going to be leaving your system at this point. What I would suggest in terms of practical steps is to keep using the Retin-A and apply that nightly or something, as maintenance while your skin adjusts. As far as letting it out and expressing those feelings is concerned, you've always got this space to express your thoughts and you'd be more than welcome to give me a shout if you need someone to talk to, happy to listen and help.

Stay strong, I'll be thinking of you. :)

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Im so sorry that you are feeling like this right now! :(

Unfortunately I know exactly how you feel! But on another flaw that I dread!

I get cold sores on my lips and I have had them since I can remember. I have had them through elementary, middle, high school and will have them forever!

For some reason, I get them more than any other person that I know and it sucks so bad! Thing is when you get a cold sore not only is it a stinging/burning feeling for at least two weeks, but it look like five or six bubbles with liquid in it and then when it starts to heal, instead of looking better it looks worse! It scabs and gets red and bleeds/hurts. It almost made me cry to hear you say that "I'm not allowed to ever feel good about myself and I'm always going to be ugly. I feel insecure, not knowing whether these spots are a temporary glitch or an inevitable future."

:'( I have thought this to myself over and over and over through my cold sore and acne problems! It is sickeningly true! Its like you struggle with feeling insecure and would rather not look in the mirror, because every time you do... it's a reminder of what others see everyday! And it seems like the very next day after I look in the mirror and think -"lookin good... no cold sore no acne WOW"- I get something bad! And every time someone comments on me not getting a cold sore for a while I get mad because not even a week later one pops up! I believe that somehow mayyyyybe it is in my head. I try as hard as I can to think positive and when I start to worry I get a cold sore and break out. Maybe when you are going to bed, instead of thinking about all the stress, try to draw or concentrate on something that makes you happy. Might help with the nightmares and stress as well.... trust me I know it is hard, but it is defo worth the effort. Good luck hun, I hope that you feel better soon and Im sure your derm can help you figure out a way to help the acne that you have right now. I notice that a lot of other bloggers see better results with time, be patient even though its much more difficult to do than to say! Don't worry you will get through this .... we always do somehow :)

If you need to talk anytime, just write me. I have never heard anyone say something that is EXACTLY how I felt at one point in my life, I hope it helps show you that you are not alone. That is what you helped me realize!

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I was feeling good about myself, for the first time since being a teenager. I'm going to push for her to put me straight back on it, try and persuade her. I'll probably cry when I'm there seeing as I can't talk about it without doing so. Maybe a few years will persuade her, show her how much it's affecting me. Then again, if she thinks I'm depressed she might not put me on. They ended my course way earlier than expected. A month earlier the main professor was talking about me being on for 8 months, double what I've been on! How can they change their minds all of a sudden? Probably the NHS trying to save money. I'd pay for it myself, I'd spend all my savings on accutane, I'd do anything.

Yeah, the few spots in itself isn't the problem, the Retin-A kinda sorts that out, it's the thought of them becoming so overwhelmingly bad that they become infected again and cover my whole face, or the doctors taking the retin-a away so I have nothing.

I've felt a bit better over the past few days, although I'm still stressed. Upcoming exams and my skin was just too much, but it's cooled off a bit now. Hopefully it is just a phase, but it'd difficult not to think 'what if it isn't'. I'm just panicking really.

Thanks Paul, I'm going to try and see the positives through all of this. I think I just depend on Accutane (I would be on it for the rest of my life if I was allowed). I don't even care about the side-effects when I've stepped back and looked at how much it's helped me. I can feel what seems to be little pimples on my forehead, but I'm trying not to freak out about it. I guess some things just don't work out the way you want them to.

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Although the thoughts we both have are horrible, it's relieving to hear someone else feels the same way as I do. I walk through shopping centres etc. and bow my head automatically when I sense a mirror coming up. I don't know why, my skin looks good (well, did), but I'm so scared to look up and see something I don't want to see. I get a sinking feeling in my stomach whenever I see something I don't want to see, and I can feel tears coming up. When I have to look in a mirror that's in unflattering lighting I look in sideways (weird, I know, but it's a weird habit. I guess you see less of your skin from the side so you fool yourself into thinking it's ok). I definitely just need to think positively, as you said, thinking negatively just before you go to bed can't be good for my skin. Maybe my skin dislikes tears? If I've been crying every night and my face is covered in water where I've cried it might be giving me spots? I don't know, I'm just pulling at straws.

Thank you for the comment!-it's really reassuring knowing I'm not alone in this insecurity. Let's hope something or someone helps us both get us where we want to be with ourselves :)

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