Understanding how young people perceive acne and acne treatments

New research published in the British Journal of Dermatology has found that young people often perceive acne as a short-term condition that will resolve itself over time, which can have implications on their decision to seek treatment.

Topical treatments applied directly to the skin are usually the first-line treatment for mild-moderate acne. Young people interviewed as part of this research described feeling frustrated as they expected ‘instant’ results from these types of treatments. It was also highlighted that they feel they don’t know how to properly use topical treatments, or how they can manage unwanted side-effects such as dry skin and irritation.

The study also identified that young people are often confused about the difference between cosmetic and pharmaceutical treatments for acne.

This research highlights the need for young people to be made aware that acne can be a long-term condition. There is also a need for young people to be directed to high-quality, evidence-based information about acne, particularly around treatment options, how long they should persist with treatments and how to minimise the risk of side-effects.

The full study can be found here: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/bjd.18684