Top Teen Skin Problems – and How To Solve Them
The teen years can be filled with angst – the last thing you need is troubled skin. WebMD asked the experts for solutions to the most common teen skin problems.
Teen Skin Problem No. 1: Acne continued...
If acne doesn't clear -- or gets worse -- see a primary care practitioner or
a dermatologist as soon as you can. Treatment includes professional-strength
acne products, along with antibiotics. Special laser or other light treatments,
as well as abrasive therapies, are available in dermatologists' offices, but
these options are expensive.
And what about those occasional "just before the prom/Christmas
vacation/school play" breakouts?
Barry Resnik, MD, dermatologist at Memorial Regional Hospital and Joe
DiMaggio Children's Hospital in Hollywood, Fla., offers this quick
"Run a washcloth under hot water, and soak the pimple till cloth is cool,
then apply topical acne medicine," he says. If you repeat this process two to
three times a day, Resnik says, you may stop or hasten an outbreak.
For the "world's worst pimple," Resnik says, don't try to cover it with
regular makeup. Instead, buy a compounded tinted drying lotion and use that to
hide it and help speed healing.
Teen Skin Problem No. 2: Oily Skin
Although oily skin and acne often go hand-in-hand, this isn't always the
case. Some teens suffer from oily skin alone.
If your complexion is oily but you're not breaking out, there are two
"You can use topical treatments to 'mop up' the oil, or you can get to the
root of the problem which is excess oil production, and shut it down - and both
methods can work very well," says Charles E. Crutchfield III, MD, clinical
associate professor of dermatology at the University of Minnesota Medical
To mop it up, Crutchfield says, choose products containing alcohol, such as
a "drying solution" that soaks up excess oil on the surface of the skin. You
can also use a blotting product -- sheets of specially treated paper that you
touch to your face to absorb oil.
Resnik often recommends an "oil inhibitor" like OC 8. "It utilizes an
absorbent technology to reduce shine and it's very effective and suitable for
all skin types," he says.
If none of these do the trick, Crutchfield says, professional laser
treatments can help. He notes that the Aramis laser, for example, is approved
by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of oil production in