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How I got in control of my acne

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Background:I started having acne at the age of 12 and it quickly turned severe at the age of 13. At the age of 16 I had already developed permanent scars and I've still had acne passed my 30's. Through the years I've tried a range of expensive products and treatments but neither has had the desired effect until my latest trial. I thought I would share what I've learned so far for those who are interested.

How I got it under control:

1. Stop touching your face and neck. I've had the bad habit of scratching and itching and it's something I have to be constantly aware of. It will irritate the acne and spread bacteria to other spots. If it's really itching, use a clean napkin.

2. Keep your hands and nails clean. Once in a while you will touch your face no matter what. You should always avoid using your nails, but keep them trimmed and cleaned just in case.

3. Change your bed sheets. I would recommend once a week. If you spend a whole night in a dirty bed, those bacteria will infect any acne you already have and spread to other areas.

4. Have proper sleeping patterns and keep your bedroom cool. Lack of sleep can actually make your acne worse and keeping the temperature lower in your bedroom has several benefits such as better quality sleep and lower conditions for bacteria to multiply.

5. Use a disinfectant gel (the thicker the better) instead of those expensive products that doesn't work anyway. I use a 85% alcohol gel, they're cheap, last long and most local drug stores will have them. They're also surprisingly effective. It will not cure what acne you have now, but it will prevent new inflammations and upcoming acne very effectively. I first tried a lighter disinfectant gel and it made a big difference within the first week, but if I got sloppy and forgot to apply it about every 12 hours or missed a few areas, it would find its way back. I then tried a couple of other types and found that the thicker it was, the more effective it worked and the less punishing it was should I forget to apply it once in a while. Also with a thicker gel, I don't have to apply as much and a 600 ml bottle will last me many months.

Things to remember:

1. Don't apply too much of any product or too often. Every 12th hour is more than enough to keep the bacteria under control. Remember that you also kill off any bacteria that your body produces to protect your skin and applying too much and too often can make it worse. Also, the bacteria that causes the acne needs time to multiply. About every hour they double in numbers, so using it again after just one hour will have little effect on them.

2. Alcohol gel doesn't dry out your skin. Don't use moisturize creams unless you have to. I've had dry skin problems myself and I usually apply my gel after a shower once I'm dry and I find it to actually help moisturizing my face and back. I sometimes even use it on my hands when I find them too dry. But as with everything, don't overdo it.

I hope this may help others that are fighting with lifelong acne. This is the only way that has worked for me thus far and I'm confident it will work for others too as it did for me and my family.

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