The most common skin condition affecting the face is acne vulgaris. It is a spot that may cause blemishes to the skin and may take different forms like whiteheads, blackheads or pimples. The most serious forms of acne are those appearing to be inflamed pustules filled with pus that is deep and inflamed, thereby causing more serious scarring on the skin. Acne can affect both men and women of any age. Because acne can cause scarring and skin blemishes, those affected are inclined to use acne treatment products to resolve the issue. However, not all of these products are considered safe. The Food and Drug Authority (FDA) in fact warns the consumers about using acne products that may produce allergic reactions when using them.
The dangers of using acne products
Many over-the-counter acne products are sold in the market. This means that anyone can purchase an anti-acne medication without the doctor's prescription. While most of these products are safe and effective, not everyone has a positive response to the ingredients used in acne products. The FDA recognized the ingredient that may produce a severe allergic reaction in the body as benzoyl peroxide, also called as salicylic acid. It is the most active ingredient or chemical used in most anti-acne topical products and formulation.
The salicylic acid rarely causes an adverse reaction, but when it does, it can be serious and fatal to the user. The ingredient can cause severe irritation that may become potentially harmful as a life threatening condition. The FDA reported that most of these products do not include in their label the potential adverse effects of their products, thus the consumers should be vigilant about the potential harm when using acne products.
The consumers should be prudent about performing a skin test of acne products prior to using them, especially when the label of the product indicates salicylic acid as one of its active ingredients. Applying a small amount to the skin of the back of the hand and wait whether or not an allergic reaction will occur is a safe way of taking precautions when using the products. If no adverse reaction occurs in three days, such as redness or irritation in the small area of application, the user can safely proceed to use the product.
The symptoms of severe allergic reaction from acne products
Not all individuals using acne products will manifest an adverse effect. But among those who appear to be allergic to the active ingredient of salicylic acid, about 44 percent of them need hospitalization. The severe form of allergic symptoms includes shortness of breath, a drop in the blood pressure, throat tightness and fainting. These symptoms are usually experienced by about forty percent of patients. Other forms of adverse reactions include swelling of the eyes, lips and face, itching of the face and hives. The moment the first sign of these symptoms begin to manifest, make sure to see your doctor immediately to obtain treatment.
Taking precautions when using acne products
The safest way to avoid the adverse reaction when using acne products is to know whether you are allergic to the active ingredient of salicylic acid. Consulting your doctor, usually a dermatologist, will give you more peace of mind when taking a medication for acne with prescription. Your doctor will ensure that the acne product you are using is safe, especially when you have a standing medical condition. Because acne products come in different forms like lotion, gels, creams, toners and cleanser, it is always prudent to read the label and see if the active ingredient is present. When it does, make a skin test prior to using the product to ensure that you are not allergic to the acne product you are using.
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