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Why I Decided to Try AviClear for My Acne After All These Years

As a consultant dermatologist, I have spent years helping patients navigate their struggles with acne, offering them the latest treatments and sharing their frustrations and triumphs. But my journey with acne has been a deeply personal one, too. Despite my professional expertise and access to a wide array of treatments, my battle with acne has persisted well into adulthood. Today, I want to share why, after all these years, I decided to undergo treatment with AviClear.

My Personal Battle with Acne

Acne has been a part of my life since my teenage years. Like many others, I tried countless over-the-counter products, prescription medications, and even lifestyle changes to control my breakouts. Some treatments provided temporary relief, but none offered a lasting solution. This ongoing struggle not only affected my skin but also took a toll on my self-esteem and confidence.

Acne can feel like a relentless adversary, one that impacts not only your physical appearance but also your mental and emotional well-being. It’s a condition that doesn’t discriminate by age, gender, or lifestyle. Despite my extensive knowledge and access to the best treatments available, I found myself in the same boat as many of my patients—constantly searching for a solution that would offer lasting relief.

Professional Expertise Meets Personal Experience

As a consultant dermatologist, I have always been on the lookout for the most effective acne treatments for my patients. Over the years, I’ve seen prescribed and myself taken all sorts of acne therapies, from topical retinoids and antibiotics to hormonal treatments and isotretinoin. While these options work well for many, they come with their own set of challenges, including side effects and the need for long-term commitment, follow-up and monitoring.

When I first heard about AviClear as a new, innovative acne treatment, I was intrigued. This laser-based therapy promised effective results with minimal downtime and without the systemic side effects associated with oral medications. It was a game-changer in the realm of acne treatment, and I immediately knew I wanted it in my practice, based on the information coming from original studies. I won’t lie, I also selfishly wanted to see first-hand what it could do for me.

The Mental Health Impact of Acne

Living with acne is not just a cosmetic issue; it significantly impacts mental health. Over the years, I’ve spoken openly about how acne can lead to anxiety, depression, and social withdrawal. The constant worry about breakouts and the frustration of trying treatment after treatment without success can be mentally exhausting. I’ve seen these effects in my patients and experienced them myself. The emotional burden of acne can be just as debilitating as the physical symptoms.

The psychological toll of acne cannot be understated. It’s not merely about having a few pimples; it’s about the persistent insecurity, the feeling of being judged, and the endless cycle of hope and disappointment with each new treatment. Acne can affect every aspect of your life—from your willingness to engage in social activities to your performance at work or school. It’s a burden that many carry silently, often feeling that their concerns are dismissed as vanity rather than recognised for the genuine mental health challenge they represent.

Why I Chose AviClear

Several factors influenced my decision to try AviClear:

  1. Non-Systemic Treatment: One of the primary reasons I chose AviClear is that it is a non-systemic treatment. This means it works on the surface of the skin without affecting the rest of the body. For someone who has been through the rigors of systemic treatments like antibiotics and isotretinoin, this was a significant advantage. I was personally at a point where I did not want to take any more oral medication.
  2. Minimal Downtime: With my busy schedule, I needed a treatment that wouldn’t require extensive recovery time. AviClear promised minimal downtime, allowing me to continue my professional and personal activities without interruption.
  3. Long-Term Solution: Many acne treatments provide temporary relief, but AviClear offered the potential for a long-term solution by targeting the sebaceous glands. This approach addresses the root cause of acne (the overactive oil gland), promising more sustained results.
  4. Safety and Efficacy: As a dermatologist, safety is paramount. AviClear is FDA-approved and backed by clinical studies demonstrating its efficacy and safety for acne of all severity. This reassured me that I was opting for a treatment that had undergone rigorous testing. If it is good enough for me, it is certainly good enough for my patients; I would personally never recommend something in clinic I wasn’t prepared to have myself.

What is AviClear?

AviClear is a cutting-edge laser treatment specifically designed to target and reduce acne. Unlike traditional acne treatments that often involve topical or oral medications, AviClear uses advanced laser technology at a very specific wavelength of 1726nm to address the root cause of acne: the overproduction of sebum. By selectively targeting the sebaceous glands, AviClear reduces sebum production, thereby decreasing the occurrence of acne.

How Does AviClear Work?

AviClear works by using a specialised laser to target the sebaceous glands in the skin. These glands are responsible for producing sebum, the oily substance that can clog pores and lead to acne. By precisely targeting and reducing the activity of these glands, AviClear helps to control sebum production, reducing the frequency and severity of breakouts.

The treatment involves three treatments, typically spaced about 3 to 4 weeks apart. Each session lasts about 30 minutes and involves the laser being passed over the affected areas of the skin. The laser energy penetrates the skin and is absorbed by the sebaceous glands, reducing their activity without damaging the surrounding tissue. There is no open wound or sore with the laser.

The Treatment Experience

Undergoing AviClear was a straightforward process. The skin was cleaned with acetone (which smells a lot like nail varnish remover), protective goggles were place over my eyes and then wet gauze applied to the skin surface. The laser was then used to treat my full face with extra pulses or shots being applied to my chin and jawline where I remain most prone to break-outs. I did not treat my back or chest as these are not problem areas for me.

During the procedure, I felt a series of quick, mild heat sensation as the laser worked its way across my skin. The treatment was relatively quick, and the discomfort was minimal compared to some other procedures I’ve experienced. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the worst pain imaginable, I found it about a 2 everywhere, but my chin which was more like a 3.

Post-treatment, my skin was slightly red and sensitive for about 10 minutes. I could immediately return to my usual activities, which was a huge plus. There was no need to take time off work or avoid social engagements, which made the whole process very convenient. I went straight into clinic for the afternoon after my sessions.

Results and Reflections

I have already begun to notice a significant improvement in my skin. My breakouts are less frequent and less severe. The texture of my skin also improved, and I experienced fewer post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation spots, which are common with acne.

The most profound change, however, was not just in my skin but in my overall confidence and sense of well-being. Dealing with acne for so many years had always been a source of stress and frustration. Seeing real improvements has been incredibly liberating.

The psychological impact of clearer skin is immense. For the first time in years, I feel comfortable going makeup-free in public. The constant worry about new breakouts has subsided, allowing me to focus on other aspects of my life without the constant distraction of my skin. The relief from the mental burden of acne was perhaps the most significant benefit of all.

A Message to Fellow Acne Sufferers

If you’re reading this and struggling with acne, I want you to know that I understand your journey. Acne is not just a cosmetic issue; it affects your mental and emotional health as well. Over the years, I’ve seen the impact it has on my patients and experienced it first-hand.

Choosing to try AviClear was a significant decision for me, both as a dermatologist and as someone who has battled acne for most of my life. It represents hope and a new direction in acne treatment – the more options we have for this condition, the better.

Why AviClear Could Be Right for You

If you’ve been frustrated with traditional acne treatments and are looking for an alternative, AviClear might be worth considering. Here’s why:

  • Targeted Treatment: AviClear focuses on reducing sebum production, addressing one of major factors of acne development.
  • Non-Invasive: This treatment is non-invasive and does not involve systemic medications which require regular monitoring or blood tests.
  • Quick and Convenient: With minimal downtime and quick treatment sessions, it’s easy to fit AviClear into a busy schedule.
  • Long-Term Results: By targeting the sebaceous glands, AviClear offers the potential for long-term acne control.

The Importance of Expert Care

As a consultant dermatologist, I cannot emphasise enough the importance of seeking treatment from qualified professionals. Acne is a complex condition, and while AviClear offers a promising solution, it is essential to have a thorough evaluation to determine the best treatment plan for your unique skin needs. Your treating practitioner needs to know when hormonal blood tests are indicated for acne and how to act on the results, when combination treatments may be required, how to deal with a flare-up should it happen (any acne treatment can make things worse before things get better), advise on the right skincare, and appropriately refer for mental health and dietetics input as needed. Treating acne is based on understanding acne and having a broad depth of patient experience with medical skin conditions, not simply aesthetic ones.

Final Thoughts

My journey with acne has been long and challenging, and having AviClear has been a continuation of my lifelong battle with this condition. It’s not just about achieving clearer skin; it’s about regaining confidence and peace of mind. As a dermatologist, I’m excited about the potential this treatment holds for my patients. And as someone who has lived with acne for years, I’m grateful for the relief it has brought me.

June is acne awareness month and social media is awash with posts raising awareness, but to me, every single day of my dermatological career has been about acne awareness, not just one month of the year. Acne is more than skin deep—it’s a condition that affects your entire being. But with the right treatment and support, it is possible to find relief and reclaim your confidence. AviClear has been a beacon of hope in my own journey. None of us are alone in this battle and we all deserve effective, compassionate care to achieve the skin we deserve.