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Pregnant Woman With Acne On Her Face. | How To Treat Pregnancy Acne | Brentwood Dermatology

Dermatologist’s Tips on How to Treat Pregnancy Acne

Do you have a little one on board? Though this is a magical time for many women, pregnancy can also typically mean imbalanced hormones, mood swings, uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms, an influx of acne, and so much more. 

While we don’t have the expertise to help you with mood swings and swollen feet at Brentwood Dermatology, we are specialized in treating pregnancy acne. We understand that many women suffer from an increase of breakouts during this time, which can cause emotional distress and anxiety. 

However, when searching for ways to treat your pregnancy acne, it’s important to know that restoring your clear skin requires a bit more thought and planning. This is because many acne treatments aren’t recommended or safe for pregnant women. As a result, there are less treatment options and the skin condition may be a little harder to address. 

But don’t lose hope! Clear skin, or at the very least an improvement in your symptoms, is possible. We’re sharing our top pregnancy treatment recommendations to help you understand your options so you can make the best choice for your skin and body. 


What is Pregnancy Acne? 

Many women often experience an increase of adult acne breakouts when they are pregnant, particularly during the second and third trimesters. Pregnancy acne is a common skin condition caused by the hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy. 

More specifically, androgens—a group of sex hormones—significantly increase during this time, which triggers the excessive production of sebum, otherwise known as your skin’s natural oil. This can clog pores, and as a result, cause more frequent development of acne lesions. 

Though it isn’t a special or unique type of acne, pregnancy acne can be harder to treat as there aren’t as many safe and effective acne treatments available to pregnant women. 


What Acne Treatments are Not Safe for Pregnant Women? 

There are several acne treatments that are not safe for pregnant women, many of which have shown an increased risk of causing birth defects. These include, but are not limited to: 

  • Certain Retinoid-Based Medications (e.g. Isotretinoin, Tretinoin, Topical Retinol)
  • Adapalene 
  • Spironolactone
  • Tazarotene
  • Various Antibiotics 
  • Hormonal Therapy 


Safe Treatments for Pregnancy Acne 

While the list of unsafe pregnancy acne treatments is longer than you might have expected, there are still plenty of OTC and prescription medications, topical treatments, professional cosmetic treatments, and self-care techniques you can use to improve your skin. 


Over-the-Counter (OTC) Acne Treatments 

OTC acne treatments like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acne are generally recommended safe for pregnant women by the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) in small doses. Just to be safe, we recommend you ask your doctor before using products with these ingredients. 

If you do use these ingredients to treat your pregnancy acne, we often recommend patients use a spot treatment to target active acne lesions. This helps to keep the dosage small and safe. 

Additionally, look for cleansers and topicals that include these acne-blasting ingredients, which have been deemed safe for pregnant women: 

  • Azelaic Acid
  • Glycolic Acid 
  • Clindamycin
  • Erythromycin
  • Niacinamide


Cortisone Shots   

Getting cortisone injected directly into an enlarged nodule or painful, recurring cyst can help reduce inflammation and shrink its size to help the blemish heal faster. Research has shown that in small doses, corticosteroids are safe for pregnant women. 


Cosmetic Treatments 

At Brentwood Dermatology, we utilize a few cosmetic treatments to help women treat pregnancy acne. These treatments include: 

  • Laser Therapy 
  • Light Therapy
  • Chemical Peels 
  • Prescription-Based Skincare Products   

For more information on our cosmetic treatments for acne, get in touch with our clinic in Brentwood, Tennessee. 


Self-Care Techniques 

In addition to dermatologist-recommended acne treatments, there are several self-care techniques you can implement at home to improve your acne symptoms. For instance: 

  • Avoid popping and picking at active acne lesions. 
  • Wash and cleanse your face with a gentle, oil- and fragrance-free cleanser. 
  • Use non-comedogenic moisturizers and facial serums. 
  • Reduce your stress and anxiety through stress management techniques, such as medication, mindfulness, relaxing baths, breathing exercises, and reading a good book. 
  • Frequently change and wash your pillowcases in hot water. 


Personalize Pregnancy Acne Treatments at Brentwood Dermatology 

If you need a more personalized approach to treating your pregnancy acne, get in touch with the experienced dermatologists at Brentwood Dermatology. We’re here to help you find the right treatment for your unique skin type and skin goals. Schedule an acne treatment consultation by calling us at (615) 377-3448 or requesting an appointment online


Expert Dermatology Solutions in Brentwood, Tennessee 

The trusted physicians at Brentwood Dermatology can assist you with all of your general, surgical, and cosmetic dermatology needs. If you would like to learn more about our personalized acne treatment plans in Brentwood, TN, schedule an appointment, visit our website, or give us a call at (615) 377-3448.

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