Retin-A is a generic version of topical tretinoin used to treat acne. Topical tretinoin is not available without a prescription in the United States. Adapalene is the only retinoid medication available without a prescription (Differin).
In the majority of cases, topical tretinoin is used to treat active breakouts on a short- and long-term basis. It is used to treat acne blemishes that are difficult to remove.
Tretinoin is effective for a large number of people, but not for everyone. Continue reading to learn more about tretinoin and the risks associated with using it to treat acne.
Tretinoin is classified as a retinoid, meaning it is derived from vitamin A. Retinoids help your skin maintain a healthy cell turnover rate. As new skin cells rise to the surface, dead skin cells are cleared away more quickly.
Rapid cell turnover contributes to the unclogging of your pores, allowing germs and irritants that cause acne to exit.
Retinoids, such as tretinoin, may help your skin produce more natural oil (sebum), which may help you avoid future breakouts. Additionally, they possess anti-inflammatory properties that aid in the removal of aggressive acne pustules.
Tretinoin has been extensively studied in terms of its effect on visible signs of ageing.
Tretinoin cream has been shown to reduce the appearance of wrinkles in both the short and long term. As a result, tretinoin is frequently found in OTC face and eye products.
Tretinoin is a topical medication used to treat acne scars.
Additionally, tretinoin can be used to minimize the appearance of acne scars. Tretinoin promotes new cell formation at the site of scarring by increasing cell turnover on the skin.
Tretinoin has been shown to be effective in treating a variety of different types of acne scars. Tretinoin is also occasionally used to prep the skin for chemical peels used to remove scars.
When used to treat acne, tretinoin may cause adverse reactions. Certain adverse reactions are more severe than others, and not everyone will experience them all. The following are a few examples of possible negative consequences:
Skin that is hot or irritated skin that is unusually dry skin that feels warm to the touch skin that changes colour when applied peeling or redness on your skin
The effects of tretinoin may take up to 12 weeks to manifest. If using it results in inflammation of the skin, consult a doctor to determine whether your symptoms are within the normal range for over-the-counter tretinoin.
Pregnant or breastfeeding women should avoid using tretinoin.
When using tretinoin, it is critical to avoid excessive sun exposure. Tretinoin, like all retinoids, thins the skin and makes it more prone to sunburn and UV damage.
When venturing outdoors, apply sunscreen and consider additional precautions such as wearing a hat with a brim.
If you believe you are having an allergic reaction to tretinoin or are experiencing serious side effects, immediately discontinue use and seek medical attention.
Other topical acne medications may interact with tretinoin, causing irritation or exacerbating already-existing side effects, such as skin burning.
Other topical skin treatments (such as benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, as well as sulfur-containing products) should be avoided while using tretinoin unless they are prescribed by your physician.
Additionally, avoid skin-drying products, such as astringents and cleansers containing alcohol.
If you want to use tretinoin to treat acne, start with a cream or gel that contains a small amount of the active ingredient (0.025 percent). As your skin becomes accustomed to the therapy, you can gradually increase the amount used.
Before applying any topical acne medication, wash your face with warm water and pat it dry. Before applying any cream or lotion to your face, wash your hands. Before applying the medication, wait a few minutes to ensure that your skin is completely dry.
Apply a small amount of the drug to the affected area to gently cover it. You do not need to apply the medication in a thick layer to your face. A dime-sized amount should be sufficient to cover your entire face.
Spread the medication away from sensitive areas such as your eyes, nostrils, and mouth using the tips of your fingers. Allow the cream or gel to absorb completely into your skin after lightly massaging it in.
For optimal results, apply tretinoin once at bedtime, allowing it to penetrate your skin completely while you sleep. It is recommended that you refrain from wearing makeup for the first few hours following this treatment.
If your skin does not improve after eight to twelve weeks, consult your physician about prescription-strength tretinoin or other treatment options.
Tretinoin is an extremely effective long-term treatment for acne. While it may not work for everyone, studies show that it can help even out skin tone, cure breakouts, and minimize the appearance of acne scarring by promoting cell turnover.
Tretinoin may exacerbate acne during the first few weeks of treatment, but you should notice improvements after that.