I Am Grateful For What Accutane Did to My Skin
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My name is Andreia, I am currently 22 years old. At the age of 14, I had my first encounter with acne breakouts. It started with mild breakouts, eventually leading to severe acne towards my late teens. As I was a teenager, I was constantly told that it was a phase and that my acne would eventually disappear as I grew up. I often spent hours researching acne treatments, and ways to get rid of acne. I tried everything I could but nothing seemed to improve my severe acne. I was cautious of my diet, my skin care products, and my lifestyle. I had no results.
I would cover my acne with makeup, however, it was visible I had acne by the rough texture of my skin underneath the makeup. I couldn’t seem to fix the problem alone. Eventually, I decided to visit my local general practitioner to ask for advice towards my acne situation. I was prescribed an antibiotic and a gel for my acne. This was strictly for a short amount of time; during this time I had no results in the slightest. It was a frustrating experience as I spent time and effort yet I had no improvements. I visited the general practitioner various time throughout the years, each time I was given similar products that offered no improvements to my acne. At the age of 16, my acne intensified and it was deeply affecting my self-confidence. Visiting my general practitioner once again, I was introduced to the idea of trying Accutane. From my research of acne treatments, I was familiar with Accutane however I was fearful because of the potential side effects. I took some time to consider, eventually deciding to try Accutane. The reason I decided to try Accutane was the reassurance of guidance and support from the Dermatologist. I was eager to see how Accutane could treat my severe acne, as I saw the miracles it did for others. Before starting Accutane, I had to complete multiple amounts of blood tests to ensure I was safe to take Accutane. In September 2014, I started my acne treatment using Accutane. I was prescribed Isotretinoin 20mg to take daily. It was a low dose to take considering the severity of my acne. However, I trusted the dermatologist opinions considering it is a strong drug that needs to be taken with caution. I had monthly meetings with my dermatologist to review the progress of the treatment. Additionally, blood tests were taken every month to confirm I was reacting well with the drug. The constant blood tests gave me a peace of mind that the treatment was safe
On my first month on Accutane I had minimal results. You could see a reduction of inflammation of the acne, however it was evidently visible. My skin continued to feel textured due to the acne. Between the second and third month on Accutane is where the acne on my cheeks had improved by 50%. It was a relief that there was some progress at this time. The skin continued to appear inflamed, however the texture of my skin was almost smooth as there were minimal pimples. Four months into the treatment my acne was almost non-existent. I had the scarring from the acne I had prior to starting the treatment, which was gradually fading. The texture of my skin was smooth; with the application of makeup there was no visible sign of acne scarring. This was an exciting moment after years of experiencing acne breakouts. I felt comfortable with my skin each day that I was on this treatment. I finally terminated the treatment in April 2015. At the end of my treatment, not only did I lose the severe acne on my face but also I gained confidence with my bare skin. I heavily relied on my makeup to conceal the acne before my Accutane treatment. At the end of my treatment I had no dependency on makeup and felt comfortable to show my skin, even with the scarring. It was a life changing experience towards the health of my skin. Although Accutane helps with acne scarring for some people, I did not have that experience myself. I managed blemishes on my face with various skin care products.
I feared about the side affects that I could experience, as the list of possible side effects were endless. During my treatment I experienced some side effects. The only side effect I experienced from the treatment was dry lips; occasionally dry skin and severe dry hair. As I have curly hair, the dryness’ of my hair intensified. To overcome these side effects, I often applied hydrating lip creams to avoid cuts. Applied gentle hypoallergenic facial creams to avoid dry skin, although it was tricky to avoid. For my hair, it was hard to manage with any product. This was my most severe side effect. Overall, the side effects I experienced were minor and did not affect my health.
Three years later, I am grateful for Accutane and what it has done to my skin. Since the treatment I have not experienced the same type of pimples. Today my skin remains in control. I rarely experience breakouts, yet when I do I am able to control it with the correct diet and skin care products. I love my skin now.
If you are suffering with acne, whether it is severe, moderate or mild, remember there are solutions. Accutane was my solution. I highly recommend consulting dermatologists or doctors for the most appropriate solution for your acne.
FYI - My Accutane prescription was free through the NHS.