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Hormonal Acne: Finding the best UK contraceptive pill for acne

Hormonal Acne: Finding the best UK contraceptive pill for acne

What is hormonal acne?

Hormonal acne is a common skin condition that can affect both men and women, but it’s more common in women, so what is the best UK contraceptive pill for acne?

It is caused by changes in the body’s hormone levels that can lead to an overproduction of sebum (oil), which can clog pores and cause acne. While hormonal acne can affect people of any age, it is most common in young adults. [1]

Various treatments are available for hormonal acne, including contraception and other acne medications.

Symptoms

There are often no obvious signs of hormonal acne, and it may only be visible as spots or pimples on the lower part of the face, cheeks and jawline. [4]

These can range from whiteheads (small bumps) and blackheads (unbroken skin with a dark head) to pustules (inflamed spots that contain pus). You can find out more about NHS prescribing guidelines for acne treatment here!

Causes

young woman squeezes hormonal acne pimples in the mirror | e-Surgery

The exact cause of hormonal acne is unknown, but it is thought to be related to the hormone levels in the body. Women are more likely to experience hormonal acne due to monthly hormone fluctuations during menstruation and menopause.

Hormonal acne can also be a side-effect of some medications, such as steroids and contraceptives.

What Are Contraceptive Pills For Acne?

Contraception is the practice of preventing pregnancy. The combined contraceptive pill contains two hormones, oestrogen and progesterone, responsible for regulating a woman’s menstrual cycle. [2]

These hormones work together to prevent the body from releasing an egg and thicken cervical mucus to prevent sperm from fertilising the egg.

Contraceptive pills reduce women’s testosterone levels, which reduce sebum production and help keep pores clear. [3]

How Does Hormonal Acne Develop?

Hormonal acne usually develops gradually over time, triggered by many factors, including high hormone levels in your blood, excessive production of sebum (oil), bacteria under the skin and irritation from shaving or using products that dry the skin. Bacteria can spread on the skin, resulting in swelling, redness and spots.

Who Does Hormonal Acne Effect?

It typically affects teenagers and young adults, although it can occur at any age. Hormonal acne is more common in women than men, and it can be especially severe in pregnant women.

Changes in hormone levels can cause an overproduction of sebum, leading to the development of acne. Hormonal acne is most commonly associated with the menstrual cycle, but it can also be caused by stress, changes in diet, and other hormonal changes.

How Can Contraception Help?

Contraception can be an effective way to manage hormonal acne. Some types of contraception, such as the Pill and the implant, contain hormones that can help regulate and reduce the severity of acne, although they don’t necessarily prevent it entirely. [5]

Other contraceptives, such as condoms and the coil, do not contain hormones and may not help to improve acne. You can try different types of treatment, including birth control pills for acne or antibiotic tablets.

Speak to your doctor before starting any new medication.

Types Of Contraception Best For Hormonal Acne?

The best type of contraception to treat hormonal acne depends on your personal preferences and specific health needs. The combined contraceptive pill, which contains oestrogen and progesterone, can help to regulate hormone levels and reduce acne severity.

The advantage of the pill is that it can be taken continuously to prevent periods and thus avoid an acne flare-up. Here are some best UK contraceptive pills for acne available on e-Surgery:

Yasmin

Rigevidon

Cerelle

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It’s recommended to ask your GP before starting any new medication.

Some Other Acne Treatment Options

tubes of other alternatives to the best UK contraceptive pill for acne | e-surgery

Alongside contraception, other acne treatments that don’t contain any hormones may help keep hormonal acne under control. This includes Lymecycline, read more about Lymecycline side effects here and why you should avoid using sunbeds! Other acne medications include:

Zineryt Solution

Epiduo Gel

Tetralysal Capsules

Treclin Gel

Lymecycline

Talk to your doctor before starting any new medication.

Which Is The Best UK Contraceptive Pill For Acne?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best contraceptive pill for acne will vary from person to person. Some of the best contraceptive pills for acne include Yasmin, Rigevidon and Cerelle, all of which contain hormones that can help to regulate and reduce the severity of acne.

If you are experiencing severe hormonal acne, it is best to speak to your doctor about which type of contraception is best for you.

How Quickly Can The Pill Clear Acne?

If you’re experiencing hormonal acne, the pill can help clear it up. How quickly this happens will depend on what type of pill you’re taking and whether you’re on the combined pill or the progestogen-only mini pill.

The combined oral contraceptive pill (COCP) works by overriding the natural menstrual cycle, tricking your body into thinking it’s pregnant. [6]

The drug contains two hormones: oestrogen, which prevents the ovaries from releasing an egg each month (ovulation), and progestogen, which thickens cervical mucus, creating a barrier to sperm entering the womb.

The progestogen-only pill (POP) doesn’t contain any oestrogen. It’s a bit like the mini version of the combined pill. This means that it doesn’t have all the benefits of oestrogen that keep your bones strong and your heart healthy. But it does help with acne because it stabilises testosterone levels and reduces sebum production.

Conclusion

It is important to have a general understanding of hormonal acne, its associated symptoms, and how it develops. This will help you to make an informed decision about the best contraception for you if you are struggling with this type of acne.

There isn’t a quick & easy answer to this question, but we hope that this article may be helpful for you. If you want to clear up your skin, then speak to your doctor about trying out a hormonal contraceptive pill.

Sources

1. Hormonal Acne | Healthline
2. Contraceptive Pills | NCBI
3. Effect Of Combined Oral Contraception On Testosterone | NCBI
4. Symptoms | Healthline
5. Birth Control Effects On Acne | Healthline
6. How The Combined Pill Works | NHS

Further Reading

1. What’s The Best Contraceptive Pill For Acne? | The Lowdown

2.Best Contraceptive Pill for Acne | Cosmopolitan

3. Birth Control for Acne Treatment: Types, Benefits, Risks | WebMD

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    at e-Surgery, we take the utmost care in providing accurate and well-sourced blog content on a variety of healthcare topics. Our blog content is never intended as a substitute for professional medical advice. Always consult with your GP or healthcare professional if you have any personal healthcare questions.