Dermatologist Dr. Jo Herzog shares 5 home remedies for acne that might save a trip to the doctor’s office.
Every pimple doesn’t warrant a trip to the doctor’s office. Dr. Jo shares five things to try BEFORE making an appointment. Her savvy advice is in response to the following question by a Family Savvy reader:
Dr. Jo, my kids range in age from 9 to 17, and it seems that someone always has a pimple. Are there treatments that I can try at home that might save me a trip to the doctor’s office? Thanks so much!
Dr Jo Herzog
There are certainly things that can be tried at home for acne, and hopefully some of these might work to eliminate the need for a trip to the doctor.
First, salicylic acids can be helpful in minor cases of acne and in early teenage acne. It is wise to choose a lower potency (lower percentage) product when dealing with dryer adult skin, as the higher percentages of salicylic acid can be too drying for adults. This medication decreases some redness and swelling and does help to unclog pores.
Second, dietary changes can also be helpful in dealing with acne. Many dermatologists now believe that a diet high in refined carbohydrates may cause acne to flare and thus advise switching to a diet with less refined carbohydrates. This means cutting down on white bread, sugar, sodas, white potatoes, and the other foods with a high glycemic index. An occasional French fry or piece of chocolate won’t cause acne, but an excessive amount of these foods can be problematic.
Third, reducing milk intake might help reduce acne. Some dermatologists believe that dairy products can aggravate acne. The two factors in milk that lead some to consider it a culprit are 1) the additional carbohydrates in skim milk (although slight) and 2) the hormones that are fed to cows and passed along in some milk.
Fourth, eliminating stress can help eliminate acne. I certainly believe that stress makes many problems worse, so reducing stress or learning to eliminate it as much as possible is always helpful. Take a little time each day to relax, listen to music, read a book, or take a walk. These small stress relievers can ease your mind and possibly reduce your propensity to acne.
Finally, decreasing iodine in salt can help with acne. Many notice an increase in acne with consumption of shellfish, which might lend credence to the iodine factor. Try eliminating iodine in your diet to see if your acne improves.
If all else fails, certainly call your dermatologist. Hope this helps. Have a wonderful safe week,