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slp12

clear for years on bcp and now breaking out with a vengeance again...

Hi everyone,

I'm new to these boards. I basically came here looking for SOMEONE who may have gone through what is happening to me right now/is going through it and can offer some advice... here's my "story":

I'm 22 years old, and during my adolescent years I had always had acne. It began in middle school and by the time I was a junior in high school, I always had a smattering of whiteheads on my face and my back and shoulders became COVERED in small red inflamed pimples that wouldn't come to a head (papules) and lingered and left marks for weeks. I tried several prescriptions, and then in the fall of my senior year of high school my dermatologist prescribed clindamycin and tazorac to use together on my back and differin for my face. I also went on birth control (apri - a generic form of desogen) for other reasons through my family doctor at around the same time. By about three-four months later, my skin was completely clear. I eventually stopped using the medications on my back and had not a pimple during all of college and only the occasional whitehead on my chin area around the time of my period (but that wouldn't even happen every month.) I've kept up with the differen every few nights but other than that I really hadn't had to think about my skin much at all and it was clear. I really thought that the birth control basically "cured" me and that acne was not something I had to worry about any more.

WRONG.

About two months ago I got a pimple on my cheek that was very atypical - an under-the-skin kind that wouldn't just come to a head and go away - it lingered forever and left a mark that I can still see. That set the ball rolling.... within a few weeks I had several more of this type of pimple. I have also noticed that my skin has become MUCH more oily (I'm going through blotting papers like they're going out of style...) and that the texture has gone from smooth to covered with the very tiny clogged-pore pimples. Basically, I started gradually breaking out at the end of March and it has only continued to get worse. The latest development came two weeks ago when my back and shoulders (and chest, too, awesome...) began breaking out again. I have lots on my back and shoulders and a couple on my chest. I'm so depressed and afraid that it will only keep getting worse until I'm at the level of my old sixteen-year-old self. After four years of not having to think about my skin it's making me absolutely nuts that I have not changed medications or routines at all and my skin has decided to rebel.

Has anyone gone through something similar where birth control "cured" you but then your acne came back? What did you do?

I have an appointment with my dermatologist next friday but I'm really afraid that it will only consist of a two minute look at my face and back and end with a new topical that does nothing. I've been wondering if I should try to switch to a different bcp but I don't know if that will help because the one I'm on HAD been working and isn't any more. I've also read a lot of promising things about spironolactone for hormonal acne (which I'm certain is what my issue is - I'm oily as all get-out, good amount of body hair, pimples mainly on chin/jaw/cheeks, worse around periond...).

I know this was a mile long message but I'm just at the end of my rope already and was hoping someone had some advice for me going into my appointment next week. At this point I want to lobby for the sprio but I'm afraid I won't be able to convince the doctor to write me the prescription.

Thanks so much.

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For body acne, a lot of people swear by Head and Shoulders. When you go see your dermatologist next week, ask him/her about the possibility that this is fungal folliculitis. It sounds like you have some of the symptoms- oily skin with a rough texture and lots of tiny bumps. Are they more concentrated around your hair line?

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For body acne, a lot of people swear by Head and Shoulders. When you go see your dermatologist next week, ask him/her about the possibility that this is fungal folliculitis. It sounds like you have some of the symptoms- oily skin with a rough texture and lots of tiny bumps. Are they more concentrated around your hair line?

I do have oily skin with the bumpy texture, but I'm getting a lot of red inflamed under-the-skin kind of pimples. My face decided to break out RIDICULOUSLY yesterday/today - I didn't even want to leave the house. I can't remember a time when my face looked so bad - and they're mainly concentrated around my cheeks and my chin. On my back they're kind of all over my upper back. I wash my hair with head and shoulders, too, so I don't really think it's a fungal thing.

If anyone else out there has any advice please help, I'm really desperate. My skin has gone from looking great two months ago to being AWFUL today. I'm newly out of a long-term relationship and about to start graduate school and I just want to get this turned around so I can meet people and have fun and not want to hide in my apartment. :(

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I'm newly out of a long-term relationship and about to start graduate school and I just want to get this turned around so I can meet people and have fun and not want to hide in my apartment. :(

Recently I've been doing alot of looking into my acne being related to stress. I couldnt figure out why it clears up beautifully sometimes during the year (often in the summer) only to break out horribly during other times. At first I was thinking it was the sunt hat was helping so I started tanning indoors but it didnt seem to do much good. The only thing that seems to change is my stress levels and I think this must be the cause.

By the sounds of it you're going through a pretty stressful time right now, leaving a long term relationship and starting graduate school, is it safe to say you just finished doing finals in school too? Maybe think back to how you've been feeling the past couple months (more stressed than usual?) and chalk it up to that. Its so hard to combat stress because I find bad skin is itself a stressor! But you can try your best to combat it by maybe taking up yoga or meditation.. Also it might not be a bad idea to incorporate more exersise into your life since that usually helps with stress too. And maybe some EXTREMELY healthy eating for the time being while you work on getting your stress levels down. Lots of anti-inflamatory foods like berries, green tea (I've recently started drinking green tea everyday and while my skin is still awful I havent gotten any huge cysts lately despite this being an immensely stressful time in my life), almonds, apples, fish, olive oil, pecans, pumpkin seeds, spinach, turkey, yogurt.. just to name a few.

Let me know if any of this stress related stuff seems to associated with your skin.. I sure could use some backing up on the subject to make me feel more confident that this is whats going on with my skin too.

Good luck!

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