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Treating Acne During Pregnancy Using Home & Natural Remedies

written by: Diana Cooper • edited by: BStone • updated: 10/5/2010

Some medications can be harmful when treating acne during pregnancy. Learn what you can do to help prevent and treat acne safely when pregnant.

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    Pregnant Women & Acne

    When a woman becomes pregnant, many bodily changes occur to prepare for new life. Hormonal changes is one of them. Androgens, hormones found in males and females (mostly males) that stimulate sebaceous glands, increase during pregnancy and can lead to acne.

    Women who are most likely to see an increase in acne are those who are naturally prone to breakouts. Most cases return to normal after pregnancy but until then, you will want to choose safe remedies when treating acne during pregnancy.

    Oral prescription medications should not be taken when pregnant. Some can cause fetal abnormalities or serious birth defects. Topical medications may be considered safe but you should consult with your health care provider before using, including over-the-counter products.

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    Treatment & Prevention

    The following are natural measures you can take to help treat and prevent acne while pregnant:

    • Eat a healthy diet and drink plenty of fluids.

    • Avoid refined and concentrated simple sugars.
    • Avoid trans-fats, such as shortening, margarine, and other synthetically hydrogenated oils.
    • Avoid oxidized fatty acids like fried oils.
    • Avoid processed foods.
    • Eat sufficient amounts of fresh fruits and vegetables.
    • Avoid coffee and sodas.

    • Exercise regularly (as permitted by your health care provider) to increase blood circulation. Safe exercises during pregnancy include brisk walking, indoor stationary cycling, and swimming.

    • Gently wash your face with your fingertips (do not use a washcloth) using a mild soap two times a day (in the morning and at night) and after perspiring heavily. Never scrub your skin. Rinse with lukewarm water. This also applies to acne on other parts of the body (like the back) but instead of washing two times a day, once a day should be sufficient.

    • Do not use rubbing alcohol to treat acne by drying out oily skin. This can irritate the skin.

    • Do not pick at, pop, or squeeze pimples. This prolongs healing and can cause scarring.

    • Avoid touching your skin frequently.

    • Shampoo regularly to prevent and treat acne.

    • If you use a moisturizer or wear makeup, use ones that are oil-free and noncomedogenic, meaning they will not clog pores.

    • According to the American Academy of Dermatology, tanning (sun and tanning beds) does not clear acne like some claim. Sunscreens should also be labeled "noncomedogenic".

    Home remedies for acne during pregnancy:

    • In a blender, pulverize 1/3 cup of uncooked oats into a powder. Add some water to form a paste. Apply the paste on the pimples and leave it on until it dries up and begins to crumble off. Wash it off with lukewarm water.

    • Juice one cucumber. Apply the juice, using a pastry brush, on the pimples and leave it on for 15-30 minutes. Wash it off with lukewarm water.

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    Disclaimer

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