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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,
My 10yo dd has acne and I am struggling with how to help her understand that she needs to take care of her skin.
I have taken her to the derm. and he prescribed some topical med. The problem is that she is not consistent with using it.
She knows she needs to wash and put the med. on, but unless I specifically tell her to do it (and I am not positive that she does it even then), she "forgets".
I had acne growing up and it is not fun and I don't want her to go through what I did. I finally went on Accutane (in my 20's) because nothing else worked.
First of all, is there something more natural that may work because I really don't like using the prescription meds. on her?
If not, how do I get her to understand that in order for her skin to get better, she needs to do these things?
We have talked about it and she says she understands, but yet she doesn't do it.
Any thoughts?
Thanks!
Deece
 

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I can totally relate... I *still* have acne and I am 32 years old! And it started when I was about 10 or 11 years old, too. It has improved but won't go away...

As far as getting DD to put the cream on her face - well, I guess it's not that important to her or she would do it?

BUT, maybe if you can make it into a fun activity, like have an afternoon where you two do facials on each other... You know, steam your faces over a bowl of boiling water with some herbs in it, then a masque, cucumber slices or whatever (I'd be a little silly with it, personally), then as a final step the derm. cream. Explain that now that she is growing up into a young lady, she will need a skin care regimen (I was going to say 'beauty regimen' but then realized how wrong that sounded to me!). I would try not to make it all about the acne, she's probably embarrassed about that already.

Maybe try to find a cleanser that she will like using, perhaps something that smells nice - I wouldn't go for the abrasive scrubs or anything at her age, personally - and I think over the long term they can make it worse. If you have a routine you follow, I would demonstrate that too... Perhaps a stack of new facecloths in her favorite colour to use to wash her face with would serve as a reminder on the bathroom counter (and for acne I would suggest a clean cloth every time - also a clean towel to dry with.)

Having said that, also be prepared to find out that no matter what she does, she may still have acne. Personally, I've been working with a naturopath trying to find a dietary cause for over a year now but to no avail.

I did find a tea tree oil gel product, I think the company that makes it is Jason, that is somewhat helpful. It's soothing and acts as a toner but it's in a gel form so it's easy to apply with fingers.
 

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look at www.acne.org I followed that link from a thread on MDC the other day and it seems to have good advice. It's basically the proactiv solution, but over the counter and pretty mild.

looking for something natural- maybe a wash with tea tree oil?

I have no clue about how to get her to stick to a routine, though...
good luck!
 

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I was on accutane in my 20's. After years of dermatoligist, it was really the only thing that worked. I occasionally use generic proactive and it works ok for mild acne. I think I would do a nighttime routine with her, like "Let's go do our (whatever)" and use the time to wash my face, too.
 

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I have a 14.5 year old ds and we too are struggling with Acne. I have tried REALLY hard to impress on him the importance of a clean face...but he up until about 3 weeks ago JUST DIDN'T CARE...very frustrating!!!! Well, I guess on some level he cared, but just not enuf to listen to mom. I would tell him that the acne he had was just a result of not washing his face long enuf or good enuf and he would mumble, yeah yeah yeah, I KNOW!
I talked to our dr. and he put him on tetracycline (sp) and that seemed to make it worse (as it was supposed to at first), so he got frustrated and quite using it.
However, I have noticed in the last 3 weeks that his face looks WONDERFUL, I have made it a point to let him know he looks fantastic and I asked what he is doing different--he looked at me and said "i'm washing my face!" I asked him, wouldn't it have been much easier to just do that in the first place??
:
:

Anyways, what I am trying to say is, what is important to us as parents, isn't always important to kids...we can only give them the tools, guidance and support and hope that they finally come to the realization that we really DO know what we are talking about
 

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but, a lot of acne isn't caused by dirty faces. I think mine is completely hormonal. Those topicals and even tetrcycline did nothing for me. I assume she will start using the meds when it becomes important to her. Is she embarassed to use the meds?
 

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My daughter has been fairhtfull washing her face and trying to treat her chin acne, and nothing helps... she only has it in her chin. Rught now she washes with something from St. Ives and uses teat tree oil, but it doesn't seem to be working..

dar
 

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My DH had/has acne problems since he was 12 and he's 38 now and still has severe flare ups from time to time....my DD started to have problems with acne recently, she's 12. The one and only thing we have found that works is a citrus based vegan soap. They both use it to shower with and DH has no acne as long as he uses this soap...DD only gets a few spots on her nose when she gets her period beyond that she is clear as a bell now too. I don't have a new bar in the cabinet right now so I don't know the name of the company that makes it but look for something with orange and grapefruit oils in it.

I have a girlfriend who makes vegan soap and my hubby swears by her triple citrus scrub. She stopped soaping when they moved and we found another vegan citrus soap at Wild Oats that works almost as well for him.
 

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proactive works really well, when my dd started using it it cleared hers up within a week or so. She has a fairly mild case though. She did slack off and it came back, but at 17 it's really up to her to keep using it or not.
 

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Hi,

I feel for your dd.
I've had bad acne on and off for 26 years now and have tried absolutely every mainstream and alternative treatment and regimen.

Firstly, cleansing needs to be regular and gentle. Cetaphil is the generally-accepted preferred cleanser among the dozens of dermatologists and dermatological surgeons (for scars) that I've seen over the years and today.

There are gentle sulfur soaps on the market -- in your natural foods store -- that cost about $5. These can be very effective. Be sure, be absolutely sure, to get the brand that does not contain fragrance.

That said, Proactiv is a nightmare for many with acne and sensitive skin as it contains fragrance. For me, Proactiv is like begging for more acne.

What Proactiv is and has, you can do more cheaply and naturally at home. Try the gentle cleanser and a regular Benzoyl Peroxide application. If possible, limit this to evening as it's bleaching. Get a white pillowcase and white pjs or nightshirt.

People have been guilted for years about the food-acne link. One proven one is iodine. Avoid shellfish. Sometimes, citrus is aggravating but it's also an internal cleansing. A healthy diet and exercise regime help. Many acne sufferers notice that regular aerobic activity, with sweating and then showering, seems to have a cathartic effect on their acne.

I liked the tone in your email a lot. It's very important that people not feel like it's their fault they have acne -- from eating chocolate or thinking about sex too much (!) or ...

The sun can aggravate acne. A bit of a tan or pinking from the sun makes the acne look better at first, then it enrages it.

I like your idea of just getting your daughter into good habits. It should just be par for the course ... like brushing and flossing. Maybe you could introduce something else that's fun. In our home, this is rubbing lotion on our feet at the end of the whole shebang.

I'll never forget the kind words of one dermatologist I saw. He said: "You know, you're acne isn't the first thing anyone would notice about you." It's important to somehow address the self-esteem issue of all of this. You can do this best as you're her mom and also sound very kind and sensitive.

peace,
teastaigh
 

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do you know anyone who's breastfeeding who can give you a few ounces to use to make soap? my brother (just turned 18) has been battling really bad acne for years & years and my mom took home some of my homemade (by a friend) breastmilk soap and his skin is nearly perfect now. I've struggled with skin issues for years, too, and I've discovered that two things make it worse: not drinking enough water and washing my face. Seriously, I don't wash my face unless I've worn makeup, and that's MAYBE twice a year. I just make sure I drink enough water and I've seen a HUGE improvement in the quality of my skin. Even more so now that I've had to cut dairy out of my diet for my son's allergy issues, but even before that it was getting a lot better.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Wow! Thank you all so much for the support and ideas.
She is supposed to go to the derm. next week and I am kind of feeling like cancelling the appointment and relaxing about it for now. He has her on 2 meds and the one seems to make things worse, but the other one seems to help a bit.
So, I am not sure if I should give up on that route yet or not.
When I was a teen, I used any acne clearing product I could get my hands on. My skin was always red and sensitive. Now that I am older, I find it best to only wash in the morning and to use something very gentle. I even switched to using products for dry skin. My face is so much happier.
I don't want to put my dd through what I went through (the comments about my skin being red were so hard to deal with!).
I think I am going to take her out and give her a few options of a gentle cleanser and let her choose. I like the idea of washcloths just for her to cleanse with.
It is hard to wash with her because I don't wash at night and in the morning I wash in the shower.
I will encourage the water (I do that anyway, but she fights that also) and look into probiotics.
She is such a beautiful girl inside and out. I just want to do what I can for her.
Again, thank you for the support and ideas, they are very much appreciated when I feel like I am doing everything wrong.
Deece
 

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This is the remedy we recommend in our store. You should be able to find these items at your local health food store.

Calc sulph (homeopathic remedy for acne and boils)
burts bees tomato soap (morning and night)
burts bees tomato toner (morning and night)
burts bees citrus facial scrub (once a day, use very gently as to not enlarge the pores)

This combination works very well for people willing to stick with it. I think your dd would be willing to wash twice a day with these as you can get pretty quick results with them, and there are no chemicals in any of it. I would also make sure she has eliminated soda (except maybe occassionally), elimate ALL sugary drinks and limit sugar in general and make sure she's drinking lots of water. It wouldn't hurt to put her on flax oil, either.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by teastaigh View Post
I'll never forget the kind words of one dermatologist I saw. He said: "You know, you're acne isn't the first thing anyone would notice about you." It's important to somehow address the self-esteem issue of all of this. You can do this best as you're her mom and also sound very kind and sensitive.

peace,
teastaigh
Man, I wish that were true, but I think that is why acne is so damaging to a kids' self-esteem. It is on your face. It really is the first thing people notice.


Cetaphil doesn't work for me. It makes me feel greasy and get little bumps on my cheeks. The cleanser I am liking right now is by Philosophy, but it's 20 dollars. I make it last 6 months, though.
 

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Are you sure she really wants to be rid of it? Is it a true medical problem for her, or a cosmetic problem? I've known grown women who covered acne with make-up and treated it, and others who choose not to do anything beyond maintaining good hygiene-- either they are not very visual people so not too concerned with appearance, or they wanted to make some sort of statement about society treating women's appearance as excessively important, or whatever.

This kind of hits home with me because I went through a short time (ages 12-13) when I had pretty bad acne, and my mother was constantly after me to do something about it, taking me to dermatologists, reminding me to wash my face and put on creams, putting makeup on me, etc. Meanwhile a total of maybe four peers in this period of time ever said anything about it, once each-- and I was bullied a LOT, by a lot of people, just not about my skin. Finally one night when she was nagging me about makeup again, I decided to take the dramatic approach, burst into tears and said "Why are you so ashamed to be seen with me just because my skin isn't perfect?" Never heard about it again, but now that I know my mother as an adult, I think she was upset that her baby's skin was no longer baby-skin, and was reacting to that. (And also to her mother, who literally thought it was fine for a woman to steal and murder as long as she looked good doing it, while looking less-than-perfect was simply immoral.)
 

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Excellent point, I would definately stay away from some of the comments that were posted here as said to kids.

I've never commented negatively about my dd's skin and never suggested she wash her face more or given her a hard time. I only once asked her if she would like some skin care products and she said yes and we discussed it a little and picked some out something to try. After that, I never said another thing. I didn't even comment on her looking better when it started working, although I did ask her how she thought it was working, if it was too harsh for her or if she thought a different product would be better.

I want to support her choices on what she wants and feels is best for her.
 

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Your daughter sounds exactly like me. I started getting acne around 8 or 9 and saw a dermatologist for years. I was on differin, retin-a, some kind of pill and finally acutane. Throughout all of that I hardly ever followed my "routine". I would "forget" my medicine when we went on trips, "forget" at night, just generally forget all the time. I remember my mom and my dermatologist asked one time why I wasn't taking my medicine (i was on some pill at that point) and I didn't really know, all I could say was that it made me feel like I was sick.

Now, (with 10 years of hindsight) I think I didn't use the medication because everytime I used it, it was a reminder of what was wrong with me. You know, I had to rub my hands all over my bumpy face and confront my ugly skin and maybe deal with the possibility that what I was doing wouldn't work.

I also had some serious peeling, even with using the creams or taking the accutane every fourth day or so. So that just added to my embarassement. Not only did I have some serious acne all over my face, I also had flakey skin!

So you might try talking to her about if she's noticing any side effects she doesn't like, she might be embarassed to tell you. I think encouraging a skin routine is a good idea, but I wouldn't end it or start it with her medication. Maybe she washes her face first, then puts on/takes her medication, then finishes with a nice smellling or glittery lotion (I loved glitter lotion!).

I also really hate washing my face if I'm not in the shower, I just seem to get water everywhere. So I just try to shower everyday and wash my face then. Maybe her routine could include a shower everyday and medication afterward, then lotion or some other nice smelling/good feeling routine (help me out here, I'm a bit clueless when it comes to "spa" type things).

And I agree about toning it down. Let her know you love her regardless of how her skin looks and maybe let her decide if she wants to continue with the medication. (and I know you do love her unconditionally, it can just be helpful to hear that everynow and then).

Hope some of that helps. Hugs to you and your daughter.

~Julia
 
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