Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Acne Health Center

Font Size

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. 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 treatment approaches.

"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 School 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 acne.

"It actually interacts with the oil glands themselves to get them to be less active. In a sense, it causes them to 'go to sleep' for up to a year, so oil production is dramatically down," says Crutchfield.

When the glands "wake back up", in anywhere from a few months to a year, additional treatments can put them back to bed in no time.

What you don't want to do is wash your face excessively, trying to get rid of the oil.

"The 'squeaky clean' feeling people get from using soaps is derived from stripping the fatty oils from our skin, and is more harmful than good," says Resnik.

Instead, use a gentle cleanser and wash no more than twice a day.

Teen Skin Problem No. 3: Excess Sweating

Be it on the palms of your hands and soles of your feet, under your arms, in your scalp, or anywhere on your body, if you often find yourself drenched in perspiration, you're not alone. Doctors say this is a major issue for many teens.

The problem, says Resnik, can result from two distinct conditions. The first, he says, is caused by stress - with excess sweating most often occurring under the arms.

"For this situation, all you need is a maximum-strength antiperspirant like Maxim or Certain-Dri, which can really reduce perspiration output," he says.

They work by plugging the sweat ducts so the perspiration never reaches the skin. If over-the-counter antiperspirants don't seem to help, he says, your doctor can prescribe medical- strength products.

Today on WebMD

Girl with acne
See if you know how to control your acne.
happy woman with clear skin
Triggers and treatments for blackheads, whiteheads, and cystic acne.
 
Bride with acne
Dos and don’ts for hiding breakouts.
close-up of a young man soaping his face
Why adults get acne and how to treat it.
 
Doctors
Article
Boy cleaning acne face
Quiz
 
HPV Vaccine Future
Video
beauty cream
Article
 
Bride with acne
Slideshow
Woman applying mineral makeup
Slideshow
 
69x75_mineral_makeup.jpg
Video
Arrows pointing on teen girl blemish
Quiz
 

WebMD Special Sections