Acne During Pregnancy: One thing that pregnancy results in is, of course, an elevation in the levels of your body’s hormones. That in itself can affect your body in various ways. One of them is, of course, a common blight among us all: the appearance of acne. It is good to know that Acne isn’t untreatable. It can be taken care of by a dermatologist in any general, non-pregnancy related case with prescription drugs like Accutane, Retin-A, and Tetracycline. But it should be noted in this case that the usage of such things is discouraged for pregnant ladies or those who are trying to become pregnant. And you are most likely one of those cases if you are reading this. In any way, you should consult your healthcare provider and a dermatologist before taking any action to treat acne.
Drug Safety and Precautions: What acne medications are safe during pregnancy?
You might be wondering about the nature of the drugs that are usually prescribed for dealing with Acne, so let’s discuss them one by one.
Accutane: It’s a medication that’s prescribed to be taken orally for treating acne. And It’s generically known as isotretinoin.
Retin-A: Unlike Accutane, this one is a prescription cream for treating acne that is meant to be applied to the skin. It is also known as tretinoin
Tetracycline: Tetracycline is actually anantibiotic that is taken orally for treating acne and is also prescribed for respiratory infections.
Acne During Pregnancy: What precautions should you take?
Accutane: (Category X): About 30% of babies born to women that have been exposed to Accutane during the first three months of pregnancy have shown some sort of a birth defect, according to the Organization of Teratology Information Services (OTIS). These birth defects include craniofacial defects, heart defects as well as central nervous system defects.
Exposure to Accutane may also increase the risk of going through a miscarriage or causing infant death.
Tetracycline (Category D): Tetracycline is in some way related to an inhibition of bone growth for the fetus and the discoloration of its teeth, according to information provided by OTIS. And because of that, any plans of using tetracycline should be put on hold until getting to talk with a dermatologist and other experts on the subject.
Retin-A:(Category C): Only a minimal amount of Retin-A actually makes it to the mother’s bloodstream. About 10%, in the matter of fact, according to OTIS. Even less than that should be expected to even reach the baby. But even considering these facts, Retin-A still comes with warnings for women who are going through a pregnancy period or those who are intending to do so. In any case, before deciding to go through with it, you always need to consult a dermatologist and other experts on the matter.
When is the usage of these drugs considered safe?
Accutane: The usage of Accutane is considered to be safe outside of the pregnancy period and but also after making sure to talk thoroughly about the subject with your healthcare providers.
- You might be going through your childbearing years. And in that case, you should be using to forms of birth control. It should commence one month before starting to use Accutane and go on up to one month after being done using it. And in the case of breastfeeding, Accutane should not be used.
- You should talk thoroughly with the designated experts about the possibility of witnessing failure with your chosen method of birth control.
- You must have had a negative pregnancy testone week before starting to take Accutane. Otherwise, it must not be used.
- If you’re going to start using Accutane, then it must be started on the second or the third day after the next regular menstrual period that you go through.
Tetracycline: Normally, you shouldn’t consider using Tetracycline while you are pregnant. But in the case of getting approval from your healthcare provider, then there shouldn’t really be anything stopping you from taking it. It should be noted that Tetracycline has been approved by the American Academy of Pediatrics to be used while breastfeeding.
Retin-A: Now Retin-A isn’t the same as Accutane. But unfortunately, we don’t have enough collected data on the drug as it hasn’t gone through enough studies to draw conclusions. But to be safe, it is advised to avoid using it during a period of pregnancy. And of course, similarly to Accutane, don’t go through with it before having thorough discussions with your healthcare providers. They know what’s best.
What about over the counter Astringents and Creams for Acne?
Now you might find yourself with an opportunity to get your hands on over the counter medicated acne creams and treatments. In such case, it is advised that you should first talk to your healthcare provider in detail about the products that you think of using. Some of these products might contain benzoyl peroxide, which is a substance that has been deemed safe for use by pregnant women. But like in most things, not all products are safe to be used. Some of them might contain salicylic acid, and it is something that you would definitely want to avoid.
The one most important advice that you should always remember is the following: Always make sure to talk to your healthcare providers and the experts of the field before you start considering taking any kind of substance or medication, whether it is prescribed or purchase over the counter.