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laindenver

sad and confused

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Hey, I'm a 26 year old female and I've had acne since I was 11. I've been on almost any prescription there is: Clindamyacin, differin, retin-a, retin-a micro, minocyclin, doryx, glycolic acid 10%, benzoyl peroxide... the list goes on. About 2 years ago it started flaring up really badly and I freeaaked out. I was so depressed I never wanted to leave the house. If I hadn't had bills to pay I wouldn't have even gone to work. I ended up on accutane.

It worked great, my skin was clear and for the first time I wasn't waking up every morning and running to the mirror to check my face. After I was done with accutane I was so sure I would never need to worry again but a few months later I was getting minor breakouts. I went back to the derm and got 0.025% retin-a. Now it's been almost 8 months off accutane. Some days my skin is pretty good but some days it's not. I feel like I'm back on the roller-coaster. My acne is not nearly as bad as it was before but there's always SOMETHING and I can feel lot's of little things under my skin. I'm starting to get depressed and obsess about it. I'm even considering going back on accutane though I can't really afford it right now. Has anyone had better luck with a second course of accutane than with the first? Or any other ideas or advice? This was not the way I wanted to spend my summer.

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i know EXACTLY how you feel, but i'm sorry i don't have any advice for you about the accutane. i've always been too scared and gun-shy to try it because i heard it can be dangerous for your health (and i also can't afford it either). i've had acne for 4 yrs and there is nothing you can do to get "used" to it. i just want you to know that i totally totally understand. i've been on SOOO many topical treatments, antibiotics and birth controls that i just stopped everything all together and now i just wash with a mild cleanser, and apply lotion morning and night. benzyl perox occasionally you know, epidermal growth factor....etc. still bad. still not better. so unfortunately we have to be miserable until we find that "magic something" and if u do, let me kno...........

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I appreciate the understanding. The frustration that comes from dealing with this is almost impossible to understand for someone who hasn't dealt with it. Especially because with each new topical, skincare product or pill you think this will be the one, this will fix everything. I'm not sure what I'm going to do but hold on and hope it gets better. I just bought a high frequency machine and am gonna give it a try. Somethings gotta work right? ummm, maybe don't answer that lol.

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Maybe it is your hormones? I'm 26 also and have dealt with acne since I was 11. In more recent years I began to breakout only along my jawline/chin/mouth area and it got pretty bad. I was told that it was due to my hormones and I started to take birth control. Now I rarely ever breakout and it is due to getting my hormones under control. Have you tried birth control or spiro?

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I think part of my acne is hormonal, that's what the derm said anyway, and alot of my breakouts were in those same areas. Right now it's mostly on my chin around my mouth and on my forehead. I haven't had forehead breakouts for a long time so I don't know whats up with that. I've never tried birth control pills because I get migraines and they told me at the clinic that it wasn't a great idea for someone who got them but to be honest I'm also nervous about having to go off of them at some point and my skin really freaking out. How did it work for you? How long have you been on them? I asked my derm about spiro a couple years ago and she said she didn't think it would help me but maybe she was wrong... it seems they often are. What do you know about spiro? Thanks for the help :)

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maybe that's true Alternavista but I'm talking specifically about breaking out right before my period not acne in general.

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When I talk about hormonal acne, I'm speaking from my own experience of having breakouts only on the bottom 1/2 of my face. My acne went from being on my cheeks and forehead to just my jawline, chin, and mouth and I was told it was because of hormones. And I'm not talking about breaking out around my period, the bottom 1/2 of my face was always broken out...round the clock!

Anways, I've been on ortho tricyclen lo for over a year now and it has worked wonders. My skin looks nothing like it did before and I rarely break out anymore. I may get a pimple every once in a while, but most of the time I'm clear.

I don't know much about spiro, but I have heard people on here talk positively about it.

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My acne went from being on my cheeks and forehead to just my jawline, chin, and mouth and I was told it was because of hormones. And I'm not talking about breaking out around my period, the bottom 1/2 of my face was always broken out...round the clock!

Mine used to be as well, with huge cysts. And it turned out to be an allergic reaction, not hormone related at all.

I'm allergic to citrus, a common allergen and something people commonly have so many days a week they might never notice a connection. I didn't until a coworker mentioned it. Gluten and dairy to other things you could be intolerant to and never realize it.

Of course I also had hormone related oily skin, blackheads and other inflamed pimples elsewhere as well. Anyway, teenage acne usually starts on the forehead and then goes away from there. That's common.

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Really? You're allergic to citrus? I use alot of lemon juice in salad dressing and even drink it mixed with water. I might have to avoid it for awhile and see how it goes. Glad your skin is clear now alternavista.

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Guest anonymous

there are tons of peopl eon here that have been on accutane twice. try to find them and get info. I feel for ya but don't really have any good advice. i took accutane back in 2000 and it nearly killed me. i bet it's hormonal though like the people on here say. i know it expensive and kind of lame but i've had succes with attacking pimples i feel under my skin with zeno. it keeps them from ballooning. it is expensive though so that sucks :cry:

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I think zeno is similar to the high frequency device I just bought. Mine was expensive- $185- but so far I'm cautiously optimistic. Mine I also run over my whole face, is that how zeno works also?

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My acne went from being on my cheeks and forehead to just my jawline, chin, and mouth and I was told it was because of hormones. And I'm not talking about breaking out around my period, the bottom 1/2 of my face was always broken out...round the clock!

Mine used to be as well, with huge cysts. And it turned out to be an allergic reaction, not hormone related at all.

I'm allergic to citrus, a common allergen and something people commonly have so many days a week they might never notice a connection. I didn't until a coworker mentioned it. Gluten and dairy to other things you could be intolerant to and never realize it.

Of course I also had hormone related oily skin, blackheads and other inflamed pimples elsewhere as well. Anyway, teenage acne usually starts on the forehead and then goes away from there. That's common.

I do agree that diet affects acne, and I've altered my diet to avoid those foods that I found break me out. For fruit I only eat apples and mangoes (everything else makes me nervous), and I cut out processed sugar, nuts, caffeine, tomatoes, dairy, and most other processed foods that I used to eat. However, even with cutting those foods out, I was still breaking out (although it got better). I didnt' have the patience to wait it out and see what other foods I had to cut out, so I decided to deal with my hormones directly. For me, the change in diet along with the birth control have worked miracles for my skin. I can only speak from my personal experience and for me just cutting out certain foods didn't do it.

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My acne went from being on my cheeks and forehead to just my jawline, chin, and mouth and I was told it was because of hormones. And I'm not talking about breaking out around my period, the bottom 1/2 of my face was always broken out...round the clock!

Mine used to be as well, with huge cysts. And it turned out to be an allergic reaction, not hormone related at all.

I'm allergic to citrus, a common allergen and something people commonly have so many days a week they might never notice a connection. I didn't until a coworker mentioned it. Gluten and dairy to other things you could be intolerant to and never realize it.

Of course I also had hormone related oily skin, blackheads and other inflamed pimples elsewhere as well. Anyway, teenage acne usually starts on the forehead and then goes away from there. That's common.

I do agree that diet affects acne, and I've altered my diet to avoid those foods that I found break me out. For fruit I only eat apples and mangoes (everything else makes me nervous), and I cut out processed sugar, nuts, caffeine, tomatoes, dairy, and most other processed foods that I used to eat. However, even with cutting those foods out, I was still breaking out (although it got better). I didnt' have the patience to wait it out and see what other foods I had to cut out, so I decided to deal with my hormones directly. For me, the change in diet along with the birth control have worked miracles for my skin. I can only speak from my personal experience and for me just cutting out certain foods didn't do it.

..Allergic to tomatoes??

^^ nothing wrong with it though.

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I'm 21 and have had acne problems for the last 3 years. I can relate to how you feel. I quit uni earlier this year for many reasons, but my acne certainly wasn't helping! IN truth, I feel much better for having left because I was just so unhappy. My skin has been up and down since, but I've recently returned from holiday and it's looking great. Holidays in the sun always do wonders for my skin, but I noticed as the holiday was coming to an end that it looked like I was about to break out BADLY again. My period arrived, which pretty much explains that, and I did get a few large pustules. However, I found some home-made soaps in a local Greek shop; there was one made of purely lemon and chamomile and the retailer raved about it, saying how it had cleared another tourist in 3 days!! We all hear about many miracle cures, I know, but it was 6 euros, so I thought, 'why not?'. I've started to see really positive results in ten days. I'm not totally clear by any means, but my spots have significantly reduced and even when new ones start to appear, they abate pretty quickly. I hope this good fortune continues.

My experience also outlines how different our skin problems can be as citrus appears to be working wonders for me!

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yeah, everyones skin is different. I even know people who proactive works for! My skin seemed to be doing better yesterday but today I have a zit coming up near my upper lip and one on my jawline. I haven't had a jawline zit for almost a year. I'm so depressed. Is this just a phase or has the accutane completely stopped working? I don't know I just came off a huge crying jag. I know my skin has been worse than this but it's the prospect of dealing with it for the rest of my life that's making me crazy. I think even though I'm broke I need to find a dermatologist, though most of the time it seems to be a waste of money anyway. I don't know. Anything to be able to meet someones eyes without cringing. :( Good luck wiyh ypur soap gracieb.

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Maybe you mentioned this, and I'm not sure if this is a possibility for you, but have you been on BCP like Yasmin or have you ever tried spironolactone? I know everyone is different but those are the only things that ever got my skin under control (even after I did three rounds of Accutane.)

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Kriszti- I haven't tried BCP, they told me they would give it to me if I wanted but that with my history of migraines they didn't suggest it. As for spironolactone I heard about it a couple years ago but was never really clear on what it was. When my skin was really bad i asked my derm about and she just shook her head and said that accutane was the only thing that would help me. Maybe after being on accutane it would help me now? She wasn't very sympathetic, I was crying because of how bad my skin was and not wanting to go on accutane so I didn't ask her why she thought spiro wouldn't work for me. Can you tell me how it works? Also is it expensive? Thanks.

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I think part of my acne is hormonal, that's what the derm said anyway, and alot of my breakouts were in those same areas. Right now it's mostly on my chin around my mouth and on my forehead. I haven't had forehead breakouts for a long time so I don't know whats up with that. I've never tried birth control pills because I get migraines and they told me at the clinic that it wasn't a great idea for someone who got them but to be honest I'm also nervous about having to go off of them at some point and my skin really freaking out. How did it work for you? How long have you been on them? I asked my derm about spiro a couple years ago and she said she didn't think it would help me but maybe she was wrong... it seems they often are. What do you know about spiro? Thanks for the help :)

Fellow migraine sufferer here. I was a patient at the City of London Migraine Clinic and my doctor recommended back-to-back pill packs to help deal with menstrual migraine. Unfortunately that doesn't work for me, but it is something that a lot of women with migraines use to help control their pain. I am on NuvaRing and love it. I can use it for 24 days at a time so I limit the menstrual migraines, plus the hormone dose is the lowest available on the market so it doesn't cause other headaches. I used Marvelon (Desogen in the US) and it was absolutely HORRIBLE for migraines. I literally had one everyday and was about ready to lose it after 5 weeks. The literature I've read suggests that 1/3 of the time, your migraines will get worse, 1/3 they'll stay the same, and another 1/3 they'll get better. I've tried 2 BCPs and NuvaRing and have experienced each outcome. Otherwise, I'd say Loestrin 24 and Yaz are probably your best bets because they're low dose and have a 24-day cycle instead of a 21-day cycle.

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Kriszti- I haven't tried BCP, they told me they would give it to me if I wanted but that with my history of migraines they didn't suggest it. As for spironolactone I heard about it a couple years ago but was never really clear on what it was. When my skin was really bad i asked my derm about and she just shook her head and said that accutane was the only thing that would help me. Maybe after being on accutane it would help me now? She wasn't very sympathetic, I was crying because of how bad my skin was and not wanting to go on accutane so I didn't ask her why she thought spiro wouldn't work for me. Can you tell me how it works? Also is it expensive? Thanks.

Spiro is actually a drug used to treat high blood pressure but it is also and androgen blocker, which seems to help some people's skin clear up. You generally have to get labs done routinely to make sure your potassium is in check, and you pee a little more often when you're on it, but it's not an expensive drug, especially the generic form. I think it was under $10 for a month's supply with my insurance prescription plan. Even without the insurance, it wasn't that expensive. Oh, and you cannot take it if you are ttc or pregnant, which is why I'm not on it right now, but I'm going back on it after I have this baby in March! :dance:

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I probably will make a derm appt. soon and I'll definitely ask about spiro again. I honestly think I've tried just about everything else. Right now I have a cyst near my upper lip that has two heads in it and a small whitehead thing right next to it. I've also got two things on one side of my jaw that are drying up, another on my cheek that's come to a head, a small thing on my chin that I'm hoping goes away and another whitehead thing on the other side of my jaw. My skin has been alot worse in the past but I'm scared this is just a sign of things to come and I recentl moved and need to look for a job soon. How can I like this? About 5 weeks ago i went from using retin-a every other day to using it every day. I just started using it every other day again, scared it was making things worse. I've had problems with retin-a before. I'm just so frustrated and don't know what to do but hope this goes away. Anybobody had any sucess with hoping lol.

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Nearly all acne is hormonal, people. Exceptions are things like allergic reactions and pores clogged from topicals.

How can you tell the difference? I never had acne until 6 months ago and I'm 29. I keep thinking it must be something I am using because it doesn't make sense that it came on so strong out of no where. I don't think my hormones changed over night, but my skin certainly did.

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Nearly all acne is hormonal, people. Exceptions are things like allergic reactions and pores clogged from topicals.

How can you tell the difference? I never had acne until 6 months ago and I'm 29. I keep thinking it must be something I am using because it doesn't make sense that it came on so strong out of no where. I don't think my hormones changed over night, but my skin certainly did.

Where is it on your face? Also, did ou happen to change anyting in your diet or skin care routine at the time at which you started to break out?

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Nearly all acne is hormonal, people. Exceptions are things like allergic reactions and pores clogged from topicals.

How can you tell the difference? I never had acne until 6 months ago and I'm 29. I keep thinking it must be something I am using because it doesn't make sense that it came on so strong out of no where. I don't think my hormones changed over night, but my skin certainly did.

Where is it on your face? Also, did ou happen to change anyting in your diet or skin care routine at the time at which you started to break out?

I did switch a few products (face products, shampoo, detergent) a few months before I broke out, but I switched back to the stuff I had used for years as soon as I started breaking out. I'm kind of OCD about my diet, so I doubt that had anything to do with it. It's on my chin and cheeks. I have NEVER had anything on my cheeks before. It had been a few years since I had any blemishes on my chin. I did start running outdoors instead of the treadmill too. It could be dirt/pollutants settling on my face. I also had a very stressful school year as a teacher, but have been out of work for 2 months and still have constant breakouts.

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Uh oh, I hope this isn't the backlash, but.... I have four cysts on my chin and about ten whiteheads on one cheek that have come up over night! I'd been doing so well. Ten days or near clearance is amazing for me. This has really rbought me down. I hope it's just a quick blip, but my confidence has plummeted again. Why does acne do this to us? I do not want to let it control me...but it does!

I do think the herbal soap is useful - I would recommend the loanda make as well, and there are a lot of armoatherapy lemongrass soaps for problematic skin. Perhaps it's just not enough? Any suggestions?

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