What Are the Best Topical Antibiotics for Acne?

Medicines can help handle the severity and frequency of acne break outs. A number of medications are offered.

Your treatment will depend upon the type of acne you have (pimples, whiteheads, blackheads, or cystic lesions). These medications enhance acne by:

  • Disconnecting skin pores and stopping them from getting plugged with oil (tretinoin, which is offered as Retin-A).
  • Killing bacteria (antibiotics).
  • Lowering the quantity of skin oil (isotretinoin).

  • Reducing the impacts of hormones in producing acne (particular oral contraceptive tablets for women).

The best medical treatment for acne often is a combination of medications. These might include medicine that you place on your skin (topical) and medication that you take by mouth (oral). Or you might take medications such as clindamycin/benzoyl peroxide, a gel which contains two topical medicines.

Topical Antibiotics for Acne

Best treatment of acne depends upon whether inflammation or bacteria are present. Some acne consists only of red bumps on the skin with no open sores (comedonal acne). Topical lotions and creams work best for this type of acne. However if bacteria or inflammation exists with open sores, oral antibiotics or isotretinoin might work better.

List of recommended topical antibiotics include:

  • clindamycin
  • doxycycline
  • erythromycin
  • tetracycline
clindamycin for acne - topical antibiotic

Topical clindamycin will not treat your acne. Nevertheless, to assist keep your acne under control, keep using this medicine for the full-time of treatment, even if your symptoms begin to clear up after a few days.

The most typical types of medications that doctors also use to treat acne include:

  • Benzoyl peroxide, such as Brevoxyl or Triaz.
  • Salicylic acid, such as Propa pH or Stridex.
  • Topical retinoid medicines, such as tretinoin (Retin-A), adapalene (Differin), and tazarotene (Tazorac).
  • Azelaic acid, such as Azelex, a topical cream.
  • Isotretinoin, an oral retinoid.
  • Low-dose birth control pills which contain estrogen (such as Estrostep, Ortho Tri-Cyclen, or Yaz), which work well on moderate acne in women and for premenstrual flare-ups.
  • Androgen blockers, such as spironolactone. Androgen blockers can be useful in treating acne. These medications reduce the quantity of sebum (oil) made in your pores.

Best OTC topical creams and gels for acne

Numerous non-prescription (OTC) acne products are available to treat mild to moderate acne or periodic breakouts. They include cleaning lotions, gels, foams and towelettes, leave-on products, and treatments or sets. How do you understand which one is best for you?

Until you choose, discover how OTC acne products work and what components to search for. Then develop a mild skin care programs to treat and avoid acne.

The Food and Drug Administration cautions that some popular OTC acne products can cause a serious response, including throat tightness and swelling of the face, lips or tongue. This type of reaction is quite uncommon, so don’t puzzle it with the soreness, inflammation or irritation that may occur where you’ve applied such products

Active components in acne products.

Acne products operate in different methods, depending upon their active ingredients. Some OTC acne products work by killing the bacteria that cause acne inflammation. Others eliminate excess oil from the skin or speed up the growth of brand-new skin cells and the removal of dead skin cells. Some acne products do a mix of these things.

Here are common active ingredients found in OTC acne products and how they work to treat acne.

  • Benzoyl peroxide. This active ingredient kills the bacteria that cause acne, helps get rid of excess oil from the skin and eliminates dead skin cells, which can block pores. OTC benzoyl peroxide products are readily available in strengths from 2.5 to 10 percent. Possible side effects include dry skin, scaling, inflammation, burning and stinging, especially if you have sensitive skin. Be careful when using benzoyl peroxide, as it can bleach hair and clothing.
  • Salicylic acid. This active ingredient helps avoid pores from becoming plugged. OTC salicylic acid products are available in strengths from 0.5 to 5 percent. Possible side effects include mild stinging and skin irritation.
  • Alpha hydroxy acids. Two types of alpha hydroxy acids that are used in nonprescription acne products are glycolic acid and lactic acid. Alpha hydroxy acids are synthetic variations of acids stemmed from sugar-containing fruits. They treat acne by helping to get rid of dead skin cells and reduce inflammation. Alpha hydroxy acids likewise promote the growth of brand-new, smoother skin. This helps enhance the look of acne scars and provides the impression of smaller sized pores.
  • Sulfur. Sulfur gets rid of dead skin cells that obstruct pores and helps eliminate excess oil. It’s often combined with other components, such as salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide or resorcinol. Products containing sulfur may cause dry skin. And some products have an unpleasant smell.

What to think about

If you are pregnant, talk with your doctor about whether you must take antibiotics for acne. Some antibiotics aren’t safe to take during pregnancy.

With time, bacteria can become resistant to antibiotics, which implies that the antibiotics are no more effective at killing or controlling the bacteria causing the acne. This is called drug resistance. When this happens, a different antibiotic may be used.

After acne is under control, you typically need continuous treatment to keep it from returning. This is the maintenance phase of treatment. Your doctor might recommend treatments aside from antibiotics for long-term use, to prevent the risk of drug resistance.

Topical medications generally have less and less serious side effects than oral medications. However topical medicines might not work along with oral medicines for severe acne.

Isotretinoin (such as Sotret) and tazarotene (Tazorac) can have serious side effects. Women who take isotretinoin or tazarotene need to use an efficient birth control technique, to avoid having a baby with serious birth defects.



Updated: August 31, 2016 — 7:12 am

The Author

Reyus Mammadli

Healthy lifestyle advisor. Bachelor Degree of Medical Equipment and Electronics.
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