Acne during pregnancy is a skin eruption, probably caused by hormone changes. It is prevalent during pregnancy, as more than half of pregnant people are expected to develop acne. Though acne may be intense in some cases, it’s hard to determine who will develop the skin condition during pregnancy.
The primary cause of acne in pregnancy is elevated levels of hormones in the first trimester. To be precise, the hormone progesterone causes the glands to release more oil (sebum), and the oil can obstruct pores and cause the build-up of bacteria, leading to acne breakouts.
Anybody can be at higher risk of acne, but there are high chances for those who have acne flares at the start of their menstrual cycle or those with a history of acne. Not to worry, it is likely that you will not have acne breakouts during the second or third trimester if you don’t get it during the first-trimester as it begins at the first-trimester stage of pregnancy.
Managing acne while pregnant can be tricky because many over-the-counter treatments, prescriptions, and conventional therapies have a high risk of birth defects. In fact, you should stay clear of any medication that might even hurt your baby. So, instead of using any medication, lifestyle changes are the best bet for you! Just focus on taking care of your skin and yourself altogether. Some strategies that can help are;
- Use a washcloth or cotton pad to lightly wash your face (make sure you change and use a clean pad or cloth each time).
- Do away with over-cleansing as this can overstimulate your skin’s oil glands.
- Limit washing to twice daily and should be done after heavy sweating.
- Rinse (do not wash) your skin with lukewarm water, then gently pat dry and apply moisturiser.
- Apply shampoo regularly. If your skin is oily, the best thing to do is to use shampoo daily. Keep away from pomade or hair mousse near the hairline.
- It would be best if you often change your pillowcases.
- Keep your hands away from your face because there are germs (e.g, bacteria) on your fingers.
- Do not hold your cell phone against your face. Use earbuds instead.
- When washing, use a non-abrasive, gentle, oil-free, and alcohol-free cleanser.
- Drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated will help your skin to remain moist and look its best.
Most importantly, avoid the temptation to pop or squeeze your pimples. It can lead to permanent acne scars. And if your pores are clogged, you should get a professional facial treatment.
After trying all these, and your acne still refuses to stop, you can speak with a doctor. Please do not use any oral or topical medication unless it has been cleared or prescribed by a medical practitioner who knows you are pregnant.