Oxytetracycline is a type of medicine called a tetracycline antibiotic. It is used to treat infections with bacteria (Net Doctor, 2017).
According to The Telegraph in 2016, dermatology clinics found a 200 per cent rise in the number of adults seeking specialist acne treatment. Unfortunately, I am one of those people who have sought treatment as an adult. For the past month, I have been taking an antibiotic called Oxytetracyline. Religiously taking two pills first thing in the morning and two last thing at night. You must also ensure you don’t eat two hours before or after taking the tablets, and mustn’t drink milk or take any supplements containing zinc and iron. None of these restrictions bothered me though, because the prospect of having clear skin is such a dream to me I would do anything for it.
The British Skin Foundation found that 95 per cent of acne sufferers say it impacts their daily lives and 63 per cent experience lower self-confidence (The Telegraph, 2016). When I walked in to see my family doctor I have never felt so nervous, about to expose the most vulnerable part of myself that makes me feel the most insecure. Not only was my heart pounding and tears building in my eyes, I then had to sit and explain what was wrong. Sounds simple enough, until you have to say the word acne. Why does it feel like such an ugly word? Or maybe it just feels that way to me. After years of not wearing bikinis or any top or dress that doesn’t have some sort of sleeve, I’d had enough. My friends would show me the beautiful dresses they had picked out to wear for nights out or birthday parties and I would always wear the same thing. Constantly making excuses for not wearing something they suggest when deep down it’s because there would be some sort of skin exposed. On holiday I would be sweating in my full sleeves, but I would rather do this than bare to expose my acne underneath.
Adult acne affects 25% of adult men and 50% of adult women at some time in their adult lives. A third of adults affected with facial acne also have acne on their back and body (acne.org, 2017). Sadly for me, I am within this one-third, suffering with body acne. It’s so frustrating waking up hoping that you won’t have any new blemishes today, and that always being far from the reality.
So, I finally plucked up the courage to go and ask the doctor for help. With shaking hands I lifted up my top and showed my doctor what had been bothering me all these years. “Ah, just acne, okay no problem pop your top back on and we’ll get you some antibiotics.” Wait what?! Was it really that simple, and all this time I had been so deeply embarrassed to show someone. Although it wasn’t a positive experience, I am so glad that I asked for help. I can assure you that I have read every blog, looked at every website, and bought every fad item that was supposedly going to clear my skin. I can also assure you, that none of those things will ever work.
So, I have completed a full month on Oxytetracyline, and I have seen some results. I have to go back for a follow-up appointment to ensure the medication is going well before I continue with my treatment, but so far so good. I am still a long way away from being able to wear a beautiful backless dress that I’ve always dreamed of, but I am starting my journey to get there. I know you will all probably expect me to post some pictures of progress, but I’m not quite there yet with confidence. I have taken photos to be able to look back and compare, so maybe with time I will be able to show you.
Wish me luck on my skin journey.
(The Telegraph article available here.)
(Adult Acne information available here.)