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Brother H

Need help, especially now.

I've been dealing with moderately severe acne since about 9th grade (I am a freshman in college now), and I've tried a bunch of different stuff, but there hasn't been a single day where I've woken up and said "I'm clear." I've always had something.

The first thing I tried was in 10th grade, and it was the acne.org regimen. I totally followed it. However, after about 3 or 4 months, it didn't seem better, it just seemed more dry and irritated.

So I saw the dermatologist who put me on menocycline, which is an antibiotic. I was on that for a long time, and it didn't get rid of my problem or even make it better. The only effects I saw was that it made the pus turn from it's usual goopy state into really thin, threadlike material, so that when I popped a pimple, it didn't blast out, it more of effused out slowly in the shape of a very long, thin string. But anyway, I'm still on that medication from a couple years ago, and it hasn't really stopped anything, but I'm on it anyway because I'm afraid it will get much worse if I stop taking it.

We talked about using Accutane, but he said I shouldn't use it, because I get depressed really, really easily.

After that I sort of gave up. I've developed an extremely bad habit where I'll squeeze my face really hard in every pore I can find, hoping I'll get some fruit out of it. I'll do that like twice a day for 15-20 a time. My face looks absolutely terrible because of it. I have scabs that aren't even caused by acne but just from my bad picking habit. My face is red because of all the broken blood vessels. I'm a really angry person, and once I get going, I keep going until I've squeezed every last pore.

It seems like the world of improving the way your skin looks is a world of paradox. I tried tanning, and that seemed to hide the redness a little bit, but it made me break out. I tried and still try putting on powder, and, while it covers it up pretty well, it makes me break out.

I feel psychologically, physically, and socially impaired from this problem. I don't like to go out, because that means I'll have to either a) look terrible or b) use cover-up, which in the end makes it worse. I hate going to the gym to exercise because all the sweat makes my face gleam red like the sun at sunset. My entire mood and outlook on how the day will be is determined by the severity of my skin condition on that given day.

This is so distressing to me because I'm at college, and this is supposed to be the happiest time of my life, when it feels like it's the worst. I look around, and sure, I see some other people with skin problems, but most people are clear, and I just wish I could know what it's like for one minute with skin so soft and smooth.

I know that at this age, my acne should be dying down, and it's certainly been better than it was in 10th and 11th grade. But it has sort of reached a plateau where it just isn't going anywhere. I realize that the things I need to do in order to maximize my chances of healing are:

1) Stop picking.

2) Start the regimen.

3) Exercise.

4) Stop using powder.

5) Keep taking menocycline.

I guess my question to you is this. Where can I find the motivation to wake up every morning, knowing that I look like a walking pepperoni pizza, and face life? How do I do this?

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I avoided Accutane too, because of the "scary" possible side effects. But then I realized I would be more miserable with bad acne, and nothing was working.

My face looked really bad at the time, but during and after Accutane (6 months after stopping) it kept getting better. I recommend to everybody that has stubborn moderate to severe acne.

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1) Stop picking.

2) Start the regimen.

3) Exercise.

4) Stop using powder.

5) Keep taking menocycline.

I guess my question to you is this. Where can I find the motivation to wake up every morning, knowing that I look like a walking pepperoni pizza, and face life? How do I do this?

Yes, you should stop picking at your face, it will help you heal faster. What regimen do you want to start? There are tons of regimens. Exercising is a great way to relieve stress, and stress is bad for acne. Not all powder makes you break out, find one that agrees with your skin. I believe you meant to type "Minocycline" and you don't have to keep taking it, you can taper of your dose, ask your dermatologist about it.

When my skin was at its worst, I would wake up everyday and be miserable but with the help of my dermatologist I was able to control my acne somewhat. My skin is still not perfect, so i'm still working on keeping my acne at bay, but if one thing doesn't work, after a reasonable amount of time (3 months for every new regimen) try something new and keep trying until you find something that works! That's what I did.

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