I’m going to take a stab in the dark here and assume I’m not the only one of us who has suffered with acne. I’m not talking about a little pimple here or there, I’m talking about acne – physically and emotionally damaging acne.
My story starts in junior high/middle school when I had horrendous acne. I remember getting giant pimples on the end of my nose and feeling like Rudolph. I remember getting it on my back, in my ears (big ones that my mom would have to pop – sorry for the graphic) as well as my face. I was so self conscious of it and thankfully I wasn’t bullied too much on it, but that didn’t stop me from hating how I looked.
Around the age of sixteen I finally starting taking birth control strictly for my acne (trust me, I was a SUPER good girl so there was no funny business going on). I had tried all the creams and face washes you can think of, but nothing really worked.
Fast forward through high school and most of college. I switched birth controls a few times, tried other forms of medications, but nothing really took the acne away. I would get flare ups every now and then, but at least my acne retreated to “normal acne” instead of cystic, so I took that as a win.
Around 2012, I noticed my acne starting to get a bit worse, but I just figured it was another bad spell. It kept getting worse along with my periods getting worse, so I decided I was going to try out the Mirena IUD instead of regular birth control. Double-edged sword – WONDERFUL for my periods, WORST DECISION OF MY LIFE for my acne.
It was like I was 16 again – the cystic acne was everywhere and it was scarring like nobody’s business. I noticed now that most of my acne was on my jawline, some of it under my jaw, where I’d get huge, painful pimples that would last for weeks and scar immediately. I decided it was time to go to a dermatologist where she told me my best bet was Accutane.Now Accutane is a whole story in and of itself. If you’d like to hear about it, let me know. But basically let’s just say it reeked havoc on my body, but got rid of my acne … for the time being.
In 2015, I noticed my cystic acne starting to come back – when Accutane was supposed to basically be a “cure” so I obviously wasn’t too excited. I went to a dermatologist up here in Green Bay who took a total of 30 seconds with me (I’m not exaggerating) and told me I either needed to go on a cream or Accutane again. She told me “Accutane isn’t a cure – lots of people have to go back on it” which is something I definitely was never told before. Plus, that derm was an ass – to be completely honest. Acne is a physically and emotionally damaging thing and for her to completely ignore me was ridiculous.
Moving on … I’m getting all worked up!
I actually started doing some research online and then randomly one day a post from Nicole on Just the Elevator Pitch popped up in my Bloglovin’. She talked about having hormonal acne and trying out Spironolactone. Now, you can do your own research, but from what my new (amazing) dermatologist told me, it actually was a high blood pressure medication that they found out actually helps SPECIFICALLY with women’s hormonal acne.
SIGN ME UP.
Most people don’t see results until two months down the road, but mine were almost instant and my face is back to being about 95% clear. Sure, I get breakouts here and there, but it’s usually a small one that goes away in a day or two – not a big mountainous f*cker that takes over my face. And my scarring is slowly but surely fading as well. It’s a miracle drug to me, to be honest.
The first few months I had to have a few blood tests to watch my potassium levels (sometimes this drug can spike that a bit) and I did suffer from a bit of light-headedness every time she upped my dosage, but it went away after a little bit of time. I’m not on the highest dosage, but it’s working well. Plus, my coworker saw how well it worked for me so she asked her doctor to try it out and she’s liking it as well!
So that’s my long-winded, yet short story on how Spironolactone changed my life. Imagine being a single lady that works out a lot ( aka sweats a lot) wanting to go on dates or take pretty pictures, but feeling awful about my skin again. I would wear makeup to the gym (yes, I know that probably didn’t help, but you tell me you wouldn’t if you had giant cysts all over your face, please) or go when I thought no one would be there to see my face. Now I can go pretty much anywhere without makeup (though I wish this damn medication worked for old-people under eye bags …) and feel pretty confident. I still wear a pretty high coverage makeup because I’m self-conscious of my scars, but I’m getting there. 🙂
I figured I’d write my story on here, just in case it causes one person who is suffering to talk to their dermatologist. I don’t think Nicole knows just how much she helped me, just by randomly writing about her acne medication one day.
Have you ever suffered from acne or something else similar?