Acne Treatment During Pregnancy,
Here are the Things You Need to Know.



There are various options for acne treatment during pregnancy if you’re having acne flare that is affecting your skin natural freshness or pre-pregnancy skin smoothness. However, before choosing any medication for acne treatment during pregnancy, you have to ensure it’s good for you and harmless to your growing baby.

The reason for this caution is simple; any kind of medication you take, as an expecting mom, gets into your bloodstream even if taken topically (directly on your skin). Some of the substances can pass to your baby through the placenta and if any of such is too concentrated for the baby to handle, it may have negative effects on your growing baby.

What should you know about acne treatment during pregnancy?

  • Using pharmacologic options for acne treatment is useful only when it is supplemented with dietary modifications. Pregnancy is associated with crazy cravings for chocolates, coffee, creamy and oily foods that may result in significant negative effects on you oversensitive skin during pregnancy. No treatment will be effective if you don’t put these crazy cravings under control.
  • Maintaining hygiene of skin is also very important without which medications are less effective. See your skin care specialist to evaluate your skin type. During pregnancy, any typical skin can become oily and oily skin is sensitive to acne. It’s therefore important that you use cosmetics and skin care products that are friendly with your skin type.
  • Last but not the least; consult your gynecologist for assessment of your acne prescription as you cannot take a lot of antibiotics in pregnancy due to possible risk of fetal anomalies. FDA (Food and Drug Administration) recommends only limited application of antibiotics for acne treatment during pregnancy. This is because most acne medications are rich in Vitamin A and intake of Vitamin A (present in derivatives such as Accutane) may lead to a number of facial defects in the growing baby.
  • Acne during pregnancy isn’t limited to the face, but also back, breast, front of the chest and buttock area. It’s therefore necessary that you maintain cleanliness of the skin all over your body. For this purpose medicated soaps are advised by some dermatologist; however medicated soaps are very rough on skin and if not supplemented with daily oil-free moisturizing skin lotions, your skin may get very itchy and dry. It’s therefore advised to use neutral skincare products and body-wash to retain the natural moisture of skin.
  • It’s also advised to avoid oral antibiotics like tetracycline derivatives during pregnancy as they are associated with dental enamel abnormalities in the babies.
  • There are some topical agents like salicylic acid derivatives. Studies have shown that excessive usage of these is toxic for your growing baby.

What are some options for Acne Treatment during Pregnancy?

Choice of acne medication in pregnancy depends on its intensity or severity. Let’s examine the classes of acne vis-à-vis the suitable acne treatment options.

Mild Acne:

Mild acne refers to infrequent acne, in which open-comedones occasionally get clogged up, leading to one or two pimples once in a while. For mild acne mere dietary modifications and proper skin cleaning is enough. In order to prevent mild acne from escalating, topical agents like benzoyl peroxide can be used, which is a perfect remedy for black heads, white heads and uninfected acne spots. This is mostly taken on dermatologist’s prescription.

However, in some countries, benzoyl peroxide derivatives are available as over-the-counter medications and also used as essential ingredient for a number of skin care products like face-wash.

Moderate Acne:

Moderate acne refers to more frequent acne that still goes on and off. Moderate acne is characterized by an acne flare that resolves gradually and once resolved, leads to another flare. Acne treatment during pregnancy for moderate acne focuses more on avoiding inciting agents from your diet and environment, supplemented with topical antibiotics like doxycycline.

Severe Acne:

Severe acne, as the name suggests, refers to crops of acne that fully cover about half to two-third of your face. Acne is more concentrated on foreheads, chin and cheeks. Treatment modalities for severe acne remain the same as that of moderate acne with addition of some skin care products that are salicylic acid derivatives. Salicylic acid helps in deep cleansing of skin pores and avoids clogging.

Although, lifestyle therapy and diet adjustment may help minimize acne flares, not everyone benefits from home remedies. When you consider pharmacologic options, make sure you don’t start any oral or topical medication for acne treatment during pregnancy without consulting your healthcare provider. It’s in the best interest of you and your baby.

Those who read this article also read about our comprehensive explanation on Acne and Pregnancy

Return from Acne Treatment During Pregnancy to Pregnancy Problems page

Return from Here back to PregnancyMama Homepage

New! Comments

Share your opinion about what you just read, or on any other topic! Contribute and let others read your thought, knowledge or experience on Pregnancy using the box below.


Browse this Website


Over 150 Inspirational Pregnancy Poems