Every pregnancy is unique, so as its effects on the expectant mother. There are pregnancy symptoms that are felt by some but not by everyone. That includes the appearance of Acne during Pregnancy. You may not have it prior to pregnancy but due to the sudden hormonal changes, your skin tends to overproduce oil.
Your sebaceous glands are overactive that causes your pores to open up, produce more oil, get clogged and infected by bacteria. This can also be caused by other pregnancy symptoms like insomnia, peculiar cravings and dehydration.
Expectant mothers are usually advised to be extra cautious with what to eat, what medications to take and products to get exposed to. Common acne treatments – both topical and oral are mostly not safe during pregnancy. Products that contain isotretinoin, tretinoin, tetracycline, doxycycline and minocycline must not be taken when pregnant, otherwise, it may affect the pregnancy and the fetus.
Use of products like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide also must have prior clearance from your obstetrician and dermatologist.
With all these precautions and with the limited researches proving that these products may still be used during pregnancy, the best way to treat acne during this delicate 9 months is through natural means.
Home Remedies for Acne in Pregnancy
These are the natural home acne remedies to help you manage your acne woes during pregnancy:
- Tea tree oil
If benzoyl peroxide containing products works well for you, then tea tree oil (TTO) might be the best all-natural replacement. This ancient medicinal herb works on healing acne and helps fade acne marks and scars. Studies showed it to be as effective as benzoyl peroxide. Use it as a toner when mixed with distilled water at 1:9 ratio. Tea tree oil can also act as an overnight spot treatment for inflamed acne.
Aside from easing nausea and morning sickness, lemon can also help clear out acne. Freshly squeezed lemon juice can be applied directly on skin or mixed with water as a facial cleanser to remove excess oil that exacerbates acne.
- Raw Honey
Inflamed acne can bring a lot of stress, the pain and discomfort can make it worse. Treat yourself to ultimate relaxation and instant lift with raw honey. Honey does not spoil and that says a lot about this wonder ingredient. It has natural antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that can help subside inflamed acne. Use it as a face mask for 20-30 minutes and wash it off with warm water. Your skin will be nourished and you will feel the instantly lift.
- Coconut Oil
Can oil treat something that is caused by oil? Yes, with coconut oil which contains lauric acid. This fatty acid can help kill fungi, viruses and bacteria, including P. acnes bacteria that causes acne. Coconut oil can be used as night moisturizer both for the hairline and face. Make sure that your face is cleansed before applying.
- Baking Soda
Some types of acne are not inflamed like blackheads and whiteheads. Baking soda is the perfect remedy for these types of acne. Some try mixing baking soda with lemon juice and apply it as a mask on the nose area to get rid of stubborn blackheads and whiteheads. This can also be used as a spot treatment for inflamed acne.
- Cucumber and Aloe Vera
If your face is recovering from pregnancy breakouts, try to feel refreshed using these ingredients. Aloe vera is a tried and tested herbal remedy foil cystic acne and boils as it softens the affected area, moisturize it and kills bacteria as well. It can also heal fresh acne scars by restoring moisture on the skin surrounding it. The cooling effects from cucumber can help close open pores and stop overproduction of oil and balance the acidity of the skin. Put either of the ingredients on the fridge before applying for a more soothing skincare session.
Do’s and Don’ts to Avoid Acne During Pregnancy
Aside from treating acne using all-natural remedies, your skincare habits are also contributing factors in achieving a clear skin during pregnancy. These are the skincare Do’s and Don’ts that you should start doing at home:
- Eat citrus fruits: Citrus fruits relive nausea and packing your self with vitamin-rich foods can give you brighter and radiant skin.
- Eat plant-derived protein: Protein from meat is usually linked to acne and since pregnancy hormones can make you more susceptible to acne, choosing less complex proteins from vegetables is better for you.
- Use mild personal care products: It might not just be plain acne, your hormones can also make your skin extra sensitive during pregnancy and your old personal care products might no longer be suitable for you. Use a mild shampoo, conditioner, facial cleanser and body soap.
- Trim your nails: You might be consciously and subconsciously touching and picking on your pimples. Keep your nails short will ensure that you do not scratch your skin and can be a good practice for baby handling.
- Avoid using cosmetics or too much skin care products: Aside from the fact that some chemicals might penetrate the bloodstream and might be bad for pregnant women.
- Avoid sleeping in one position: Pregnancy can cause sleepiness and sleeping on one side can cause the skin to sweat and be more exposed to bacteria. Use a body pillow to make you feel comfortable sleeping on either side.
Your pregnancy should be an enjoyable and memorable journey. Make every second a light and stress-free one. Engage in relaxing activities like yoga intended for pregnant women and meditation. Pregnancy-related hormones can cause acne for those who do not have it and aggravate for those who are already suffering from it. Over-the-counter treatment may no longer be suitable for a pregnant woman even if it is effective for her prior to pregnancy. But knowledge about all-natural acne remedies can give your peace of mind. Ingredients like tea tree oil, lemons, raw honey, coconut oil, baking soda, cucumber and aloevera are nature’s gifts to humans not just as food but also as a medicine. From now own, every time you see acne, remember that your baby’s welfare and yours should always be the top priority. Do not let zits give you a stressful pregnancy.
Usman Raza is a freelance writer, marketing specialist at KeevaOrganics and co-founder of Usman Digital Media. When not working, he’s probably spending time with his family. Follow him on Facebook @usmanraza40 and Twitter @usmanintrotech.