4 treatment options for acne

Dealing with acne can be frustrating and affect your self-confidence. If you're seeking treatment options for acne, it's important to know that your dermal clinician or doctor at a dedicated skin clinic is an excellent starting point.

These physicians are well-equipped to address acne concerns and provide effective treatment plans. Let's explore various acne treatment options available to you at a skin clinic, without needing a referral from a GP, so you can make informed decisions about your skin health.

What's causing my acne?

Before diving into treatment options, it's essential to understand the underlying causes of acne. Acne occurs when hair follicles become clogged with oil, dead skin cells, and bacteria, leading to inflammation. Hormonal imbalances, stress, diet, and genetics can all contribute to acne development.

How can I treat my acne?

There are several effective methods to treat acne. These include topical treatments, medications, simple in-office procedures, and lifestyle modifications:

1. Topical acne treatments

Over-the-counter (OTC) acne products

Many OTC products contain active ingredients like benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or sulfur, which help unclog pores, reduce inflammation, and kill acne-causing bacteria. Your dermal clinician can guide you in selecting the most suitable OTC product for your skin type.

Prescription topicals for acne

In certain cases, your doctor may prescribe stronger topical medications, such as retinoids or antibiotics. Retinoids promote cell turnover, preventing clogged pores, while antibiotics combat bacterial growth. These prescriptions require careful monitoring, so it's crucial to follow your doctor's instructions diligently.

2. Oral medications for acne

Antibiotics for acne

In cases of moderate to severe acne, oral antibiotics like doxycycline or tetracycline may be prescribed. These medications reduce inflammation and kill bacteria from within, helping to clear persistent acne. It's important to note that prolonged antibiotic use can lead to antibiotic resistance, so they are usually for a limited duration.

Hormonal treatments for acne

Hormonal acne, commonly affecting adult women, may be managed through hormonal treatments like oral contraceptive pills or anti-androgen medications. These help balance hormone levels and reduce sebum production, contributing to clearer skin.

3. In-clinic procedures

Acne extraction

Your dermal clinician can manually extract the comedones (blackheads and whiteheads). They use sterile tools to gently remove the debris from your pores, promoting quicker healing and preventing potential scarring.

Injections for acne

For severe or persistent acne, corticosteroid injections are a quality option to reduce inflammation and speed up healing. These injections are typically for large, painful cystic acne lesions.

Chemical peels for acne

Chemical peels involve the application of a chemical solution to exfoliate the skin's top layers, reducing acne lesions and promoting smoother skin texture. Your dermal clinician can assess if you're a suitable candidate for this procedure.

4. Lifestyle changes to manage acne

Adopting healthy skincare habits can help manage acne. These include washing your face twice daily with a gentle cleanser, avoiding excessive touching or picking of acne lesions, using non-comedogenic cosmetics, and protecting your skin from excessive sun exposure.


A range of acne treatment options are available to help you combat acne and achieve clearer, healthier skin. Your doctor or dermal clinician can assess your needs, provide personalised advice, and prescribe appropriate medications or in-clinic procedures when necessary.

Consistency and patience are crucial when treating acne. Open communication with your clinician will ensure the best possible outcome.

Learn more about acne treatment in your FREE skin consult with our dermal clinicians!


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