I finally went to the dermatologist. This is after probably over a year of begging my parents, so that I didn't want to blog about it until after it happened. I read online that for many it's a very emotional experience, so I made sure to wear waterproof mascara. I was a little frightened, because for some it was so bad that they never went back after the first appointment. That sounds really dumb to me, because no matter how humiliating it is, serious acne can't be any better. They're professionals, and there to help you anyway.
I went to the appointment without any foundation. This was probably the first time I have gone out in public without foundation since 8th grade, so like three or four years. I filled out paperwork for a bit, and waited for my name to be called. I expected the dermatologist to be a middle-aged woman for some reason, but it was some guy who seemed like he must be older than he looked. He looked like a plastic surgeon from the zip code 90210, but nope, just a dermatologist.
He asked me what I was there for. I was a bit taken aback, because first of all, it was written all over my face, literally. Secondly, I wrote it on the damn paperwork. Of course it must have been a formality, but it was unnerving. He began to explain to me about sebum clogging pores blah blah all of which I already knew. He pointed out the different types of acne on my face. That was the most uncomfortable part, him pointing to my face with a stick while I looked in the mirror. He finally put to rest my parents' assertions that I need to stop eating spicy food in order to get better. He put to rest my worries about dairy. Food has not been proven to have any effect on acne, and it is likely that it has no effect.
I didn't need him for any medical information, I was well-versed with the help of google acne research. The only thing I needed him for was the medication. I thought he was supposed to ask me more questions, according to my research. It seemed like he just sort of looked at my face and within five to ten minutes he gave me prescriptions and was out the door.
One of them is Monodox, an antibiotic that is going to combat any infections and kill bacteria. It's a pill that I take twice a day. I was really worried about the cost of the prescriptions, but it is $10 for a month's supply. The other is Tazorac, a topical retinoid. I put it on once a day, at night. I doubted that it would dry out my skin, since nothing does, and it didn't seem to dry anything out for the first few days. I put on an extra dose, and that may have been a bad idea because now my skin feels tight and it's peeling but at least that means it's working, and dryness is a feeling I haven't had in a long time. It all is supposed to show results in four weeks. I wish it were faster, but I can already see improvement in my skin. I'm not breaking out like crazy every day now. So far I've gotten a small infection every other day, which is very much an improvement to my usual three or more large ones a day. I hope the side effects go away soon, as my antibiotics make me feel nauseous also. At least that means I eat less though.
The dermatologist is a glimmer of hope in my rut of despair about my skin.