No rxIt was just recently published in The Wall Street Journal (January 2015) that because acne has become resistant to antibiotics, Dermatologists are now using therapies such as topical acne creams, diet modifications, chemical peels, laser and light therapy and hormone therapy. In addition to acne becoming resistant to antibiotics, the other reason they do not work to cure acne for the long term is that the underlying cause of acne is NOT a bacterial problem. As we have talked about on other pages, acne is an inherited tendency of excessive dead cell turnover and build-up in the pore.

Without a single exception, every acne client that I have seen in my office that has used antibiotics for curing their acne has either A) not seen any results or B) they worked for 2-4 months and then the acne came back. Some people have been on antibiotics for over two years, switching from one kind to another, in hopes that one of them would work for them! And they are still waiting.

I understand the desperation and deep desire for wanting something to work but at some point,we have to look at other options. Now is the time. When I see firsthand over and over again that antibiotics do not work and come with a whole host of side effects that could make acne worse, I tell my clients that we really need to explore other options such as probiotics, vitamin a supplementation, zinc, hormone balancing herbs and/or diet changes.

Now that we know why antibiotics do not work, let’s look at the other side effects and “downsides” to antibiotics for acne:

  1. Antibiotics not only destroy the good bacteria in your guy, they also destroy the beneficial bacteria that keep us healthy and our bowel movements regular.
  2. Because they destroy good and bad bacteria and lower our overall immune system, one becomes twice as likely to catch a cold according to a study in September 2005 Archives of Dermatology. This is because the common cold is viral not bacterial. With a compromised immune system one cannot fight off viral infections.
  3. MRSA- is a type of staph infection that is very dangerous. The main reason it is so dangerous is because it is resistant to antibiotics. Doctors run out of treatment options and the result is death.
    Experts believe that MRSA evolved because of the overuse of antibiotics AND dermatologists treating acne primarily with antibiotics as a prime contributor!
  4. Acne has become drug resistant. Acne bacteria definitely will not kill you but it makes controlling acne harder.
  5. According to a study published by the American Medical Association, heavy use of antibiotics may lead to increased risk of breast cancer. The study looked at 10,000 women over 8 years and found that those that took the highest amounts of antibiotics the longest, faced twice the risk of developing breast cancer than those that did not.
  6. Side effects such as heartburn, nausea, reoccurring yeast infections in women and possible staining of the teeth.

The best way to treat acne is with a home care regimen that incorporates alpha and beta hydroxyl acids as well as benzyl peroxide topically. Internally, vitamin A, probiotics (promote beneficial bacterial), zinc, omega-3’s and various herbs are most beneficial.