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CostHelper > Health & Personal Care  > Dermatology & Skin Care > Acne Treatments

Acne Treatments Cost


How Much Do Acne Treatments Cost?

 
low costOver-the-counter: $30-$60 per monthaverage costPrescriptions: $45-$200 per monthhigh costChemical Peels: $75-$200 per session
Typical costs:
  • For over-the-counter daily regimens that can include a cleanser, a toner and a non-prescription medicated lotion, acne treatment costs $30 to $60 and up per month.
  • For prescription antibiotics, topical creams and ointments -- or for hormone therapy, from birth control pills to a more aggressive regimen -- acne treatment typically costs $45 to $200 per month, which includes a doctor visit and prescription.
  • For physical treatments such as facials or chemical peels, acne treatment typically costs $75 to $200 per session, with one or more sessions required per month.
  • Even after acne clears, treatment must be continued to prevent a recurrence.
  • Some acne treatments, such as prescription drugs and topical creams, are covered by some health insurance plans; others consider acne treatment cosmetic.
Related articles: Skin Peel, Microdermabrasion, Thermage

What should be included:
  • Over-the-counter acne creams and gels most commonly use benzoyl peroxide, which removes dead skin cells to reduce clogging, and reduces the bacteria that cause acne. Another common active ingredient, salicylic acid, helps to unclog pores. AcneNet[1] explains how the most common over-the-counter acne treatments work.
  • Various prescription medications work in different ways. Oral antibiotics -- such as erythromycin and tetracycline -- and topical antimicrobials work to reduce the bacteria that cause acne. Oral contraceptives can work for women by calming glands that are producing too much oily sebum. AcneNet[2] offers descriptions of the various doctor-prescribed treatments.
  • Physical procedures performed by a doctor -- or in some cases, a nurse -- can treat acne. Chemical peels remove dead skin cells and unclog pores. AcneNet[3] provides a guide to physical procedures used to treat acne.
Additional costs:
  • Once acne is cleared up, some patients choose to undergo additional treatments for scarring. These can include microdermabrasion and dermabrasion, which can cost up to $2,000 or more, depending on the number of sessions needed. AcneNet[4] has a primer on acne scarring and treatments.
Discounts:
  • For skin resurfacing treatments, doctors sometimes provide discounts to new patients or offer package deals on multiple treatments.
  • For prescription drugs. generic versions often cost as much as 50 percent less.
Shopping for acne treatments:
  • Tip: Before pursuing a treatment option, it is important to determine the severity of the acne, as treatment can vary. AcneNet offers guides to identifying and treating mild acne[5] , moderate acne[6] and severe acne[7] .
  • Over-the-counter acne remedies that can treat mild acne can be found at most drugstores. Walgreens.com and CVS offer a number of products.
  • For moderate to severe acne, consult a dermatologist to determine the best treatment regimen. The American Academy of Dermatology[8] offers a list of board-certified dermatologists by location.
  • Tip: When you find a dermatologist, ask about his or her credentials and experience with acne treatment, and ask to see before-and-after photographs of patients who have used the type of treatment you are considering.
  • You can help acne treatment work better by taking steps such as avoiding excess sun exposure or tanning beds and using only "noncomedogenic" cosmetics, which do not clog pores.AcneNet[9] offers a guide to getting the most out of your acne treatment.
Material on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Always consult your physician or pharmacist regarding medications or medical procedures.
 
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External Resources:
  1.  www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/treatotc.html
  2.  www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/prescriptmeds.html
  3.  www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/physicalprocedures.html
  4.  www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/scarring.html
  5.  www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/treatingmildacne.html
  6.  www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/treatingmoderatesevereacne.html
  7.  www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/treatsevereacne.html
  8.  www.aad.org/find-a-derm/
  9.  www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/tips_acne_medication.html
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