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Thanks for the info! I've been on OTC for about 31/2 years also and it hasn't done anything for me. I've taken antibiotics here and there; but I haven't taken any antibiotics for a long time now. I just need to try a different route.

I went to the doctor a couple months ago and she wrote me out a new script giving me OTC LO; and said that it was the same thing but it might help with my sex drive since it had fewer hormones. Well, I figured out that the higher dosages of estrogen is what can help acne; so this LO isn't the option for me. Not only that; but since OTC hasn't done anything for the past 3 years, I doubt that LO will do anything (obviously).

So, there are so many options out there that I either can pick and choose, or go ahead and try Yasmin, one that has worked for so many people. I read somewhere that the reason that Yasmin works is because the progestin is different from most and the effect on the body (sebacious glands/oil production/acne) from using Yasmin would be similar to if you used spironlactone.

So, anyway, I made an appt. today to talk to my doctor about it. I'm 1/2 way through my pack of OTC lo; but I think that it would be alright to just start into the pack of Yasmin (hey, I wouldn't mind going a couple more weeks without a period anyway). But I'm going to double check with her.

I just can only hope that I'm lucky and that it starts to work for me right away. I mean, I've been dealing with these huge lumps on my face for a long time. I can deal with them if the Yasmin causes them, but hopefully I would have a light at the end of the tunnel that they would go away soon.

JJ -
Yeah, the last thing that I want to do is be all broken out for christmas time. We are flying back home to be around a bunch of family and friends that we never get to see. I'll be meeting people that I've never met before so I'm anxious. I'm just hoping that I look better than I do right now. I figured that my breakouts are hormonal too; becuase I basically break out all around my chin and my mouth.

Yeah, Iím trying to do the green tea thing too. I drink about three cups a day when Iím at work (just canít do it on the weekendsÖ). I recently got the chamomile green tea; which I think is an added bonus.

Thatís really why Iíve come to the conclusion that my problem is mainly hormonal (and probably the wheat sensitivity). Iíve done all the antibiotics (including accutane) . They work for a little while and then the acne returns. I eat healthy and take supplements, including those ďgood-for-you-fatsĒÖ.., and stillÖ., itís like just taking a grab in the dark for what will help me.

Everytime that I get upset and all paranoid about my face my boyfriend tries to tell me that No, the world does not revolve around me and no-one cares if I have a pimple or two on my face. Thatís 100% trueÖ, but it sure does feel like thatís the only thing that matters when youíre the one dealing with it. I really, really try to come back to reality and look at the bigger picture of life; but when I canít even look in a mirror without being disgusted, itís hard.

And honestly, Iím not a drama queen. This is how I feel; Iím just a very sensitive/emotional person, so I have a hard time. Iím really not vainÖ, I just donít want to feel ugly Ė and this makes me feel that way.

BUT, Iím feeling much, much better today. Itís like my face took a huge turn for the better this weekend, looking better every day. I contribute that to not eating any wheat and taking the adrenal supplement since the beginning of the month. My face just takes a long time to heal, so the spots on my face are the ones that popped up a week or more ago. I havenít had anything new in about a week.

JJ Ė have you ever tried not eating wheat? I know that itís not the easiest dietÖ, but there are lots of subsitutions and things that you can still eat (I think of it as like a very easy atkins dietÖ, cause I still eat potatoes and fruit Ė itís not about the carbs; itís just cutting out wheat (bread, breading, cookies, crackers, pasta (and of course there are those ďgluten freeĒ subsitutions, but I havenít tried any yet.Ö.)). Iíd say to give it a shot for like two weeksÖ., and see if you see any difference. I did that (along with taking the adrenal support pills) and that is how long it took me to start seeing a difference. Not sure if youíd be up for it; but it couldnít hurt any.

I went ahead and started the Yasmin and bactrim just to make sure that there wouldnít be any surprises before the holidays. I still have my fingers crossedÖ, and not adding wheat products back in for a while just to be safe.

[This message has been edited by knut (edited 10-13-2003).]
Hey JJ, Well, as of today Iím still doin the sameÖslow progress. Itís been about 20 days since I stopped eating wheat and a full week since starting to take the Yasmin and bactrim. I really wish that I was brave enough to not take the bactrim, but I really wanted to do everything possible to avoid having multiple gross lumps on my face during the holidays. It's going to be a stressful time anyway with what we have going on.

I donít know if youíd be up for it; but possibly you could talk to the doctor about taking some sort of antibiotic during the first month or two of yasmin?? It might put your mind at ease a little knowing that something would be working against the breakout. It does for me. And seriously, a couple of weeks ago, I was depressed, sad, moody, self esteem was terrible; but I have been feeling much, much better. Iím sure that itís that my face is looking better; but Iím also possibly thinking that it is from being off of the OTC also (????). Itíd really be something if that has been the root of my problems for the past few years!

I sincerely hope that this combination of not eating wheat, taking the yasmin and bactrim will do the trick. Hopefully in a month I will be off the bactrim and everything will stay just fine. As of right now, Iím only just washing my face with St. Ives Clear pore gel cleanser (tea tree oil, chamomile, and primrose (also has salicylic acid in it, but I donít think itís a lot, because it doesnít dry me out like other harsh cleansers do)). Then I put on the regenerist serum. I only have one ďactiveĒ pimple right now, the rest are old spots and are healing (SLOWLY!!!! ARGGGG!!!!).
I wish that I wasnít so fair skinned so that they wouldnít be so noticeable.

You pretty much covered what you have to avoid. Read the ingredients if you are unsure about anything. Some stores have wheat free cookies and crackers. Iíve tried one chocolate chip cookie that was pretty good; and one that was nasty! You should be fine with oatmeal; also, if you like cream of wheat hot cereal, there is a cream of rice alternative that I think tastes about the same. Honestly, not eating wheat hasnít been too hard for me. Iím so determined to have a clear face that I just donít even think about it as a hardship or anything. I eat a lot of brown rice, soup, fruits, chili, casseroles (with rice of course (not pasta)). Even tacos Ė just make sure you get the yellow shells. I havenít really ventured out to try and cook much but I do have a book of simple recipies that I found on the web that I want to try.

Hehehe, I think that our boyfriends went to an acne support group or somethingÖ., they are saying the same exact things :) I think that they are doing both- being sincere but also saying the things that we want to hear and trying to make us feel better. I mean, like you said Ė they see the same thing that you see. If you have a huge zit in the middle of your chin itís not like it is invisible to them just because they love you (that, and that cover up makeup that works oh-so-well (yeah right!!))

My chiropractor put me on the adrenal gland pills after I ďfailedĒ his kinesiology test. The adrenal gland is basically in charge of handling stress for your body. I guess that apparently, mine doesnít work too well. I do worry a lot, get anxious, and let things bother me quite a bit instead of letting them goÖÖ These pills have a large amount of B-vitamins which help with stress, fatigue, carbohydrate metabolism, and cell regeneration. Also it has PABA (para-amino-benzoic-acid) in it and Iíve read that is used highly for skin and hair health. A lot of people say that taking extra B vitamins help with their skin. I also take a pretty good multivitamin, extra calcium, magnesium, zinc (all in one pill), and an extra vitamin E & evening primrose capsule. I know it sounds like a lot, but itís really not; I take some in the morning and some at night. And honestly, itís not all for acne; I do try and be healthy. We also make juice at home, about once a day and add flax oil to it. My boyfriend is in charge of that Ė he puts in apple, carrot, and spinach. Doesnít taste bad (honest :)) .

Well, sorry for the long post. Good luck with starting the yasmin, let me know how itís going for you. Also, let me know if you have any other questions / or just wanna vent.
Hey there, I know what you mean about not wanting to screw with your hormones any more than necessary. A couple months ago, I decided that I wanted to switch from Ortho Tri Cyclen; but I couldnít get into see the doctor for a new RX until like 2 weeks AFTER I was supposed to start taking my new pack. So, I went in to this new doctor with a sheet of good b/c pills for acne that I found on the internetÖ, I also told him that hopefully I wanted one that wouldnít affect my sex drive as much. Well, he couldnít have cared less what I had to say and was no help to me. He gave me an RX for Demulen 1/50 which is supposedly good for acne; but on reading more about it I decided I didnít want to take SO much estrogen (like twice as much as most pills) AND it probably would have made my sex drive worse. Those pills are prescribed a lot for people that have break through bleeding and really irregular periods, and mine have always been fine.

Anyway, so by then it was going on like 3 weeks of not taking any birth control pills and I figured that I would just wait for my period to come and then Iíd start on ortho tri cyclen LO (I figured it wouldnít help with acne, but might help my sex drive, and I needed to take SOMETHING). (Figured I would do that until I found something else to try.) Well, because my body was so used to taking the pills; it decided not to have a period without themÖÖÖ, which in turned FREAKED ME OUT. I thought that I was pregnant, stressed out like crazy about it, got a pregnancy test, tested negative, didnít believe it, made an emergency doctorís appt to get tested there, and that test was negative. This doctor bascially just told me that who knows when my body would naturally have a period again and that I should just start on a new pack of pills. So, I took the OTC LO for a month and Ĺ, was getting worse, so decided to start taking the Yasmin.

So, here I am screwing with my hormones; stressing out like crazy, and I wonder why my face has these weird break out patterns Ö. I think youíre smart for not skipping your period.

I really do like the St. Ives clear pore wash; itís not harsh on me and I really think that itís helped with the oil. It has tea tree oil in it. Maybe you should try it out. What wash do you use?

For a moisturizer Iíve been using the Oil of Olay Regenerist serum. Supposedly this stuff is meant to go on under moisturizerÖ., but it does such a good job of moisturizing when I put it on and itís so soothing that I donít need a moisturizer. Iíd say that Iíve noticed that my oil slick has improved this past week. Iím hoping that the yasmin will help that also, Iíve read that its very possible that it may (fingers crossed!!!)

What grade do you teach?

About spot treatments and the acne cure:
Iím not sure what type of skin you have exactly, but I am very, very fair, and have sensitive and oily skin. I feel like the sensitive and oily combo is weird; but, thatís what I got. I did try the ďacne cureĒ for about two months (started like in August). I washed my face, used Paulaís choide BHA and then put on 2.5% benzoyl peroxide, over my whole face. I felt like the bha really got down into my pores and I thought that I was getting betterÖ, but then I never really cleared up; always had these nasty patches around my chin. Then, despite what I was doing, I started getting really, really bad. I started using 10% BP on my bad areas, and tried switching up to a harsher cleanserÖ.., neither worked, and proably both of them made my face worse. I was just getting desperate. So, I stopped EVERYTHING and started washing my face with a new Dove cleanswer for sensitive skin. The redness and inflammation calmed down, but I was really, really, really oily. That is when I found the St. Ives cleanser and I like that a lot.

Now, at the same time; I was trying to use tazorac as a spot treatment. (Iíve used tazorac before, as a cream all over my face. It took about a week or so of a red, peeling face; but then it started to work. My face always seemed red, but the peeling stopped )

Well, using it for a spot treatment was a bad idea. Tazorac is so harsh and exfoliates so much, that instead of helping my spots, it would make them really red and then ďpeelĒ. Like, so I had this big red bump that had this circle around it; if that makes any sense to you. So, I donít do that anymore; and I found out that BP does nothing for me; so I figured I just wouldnít do anything for spot treatmentsÖÖÖÖ.., BUT, then I read in a couple of places that people with my type of skin can still use tazorac and it could actually help more and not give you the redness/peeling if you apply it, leave it on for like 2 minutes, and then rinse it off. So, Iíve done this for a couple days (like at least 10 minutes before putting on the regenerist serum), and so far so good. Face is still clearing up and no redness.

SO. Iím doing so much that I can only hope that SOMETHING will work. Whether it be not eating wheat, switching to Yasmin, or using the taz cream. We are gonna be the lucky ones!!!! Iím trying to keep the faith :)

We are going back home to Virginia for Christmas this year (we moved to MN a few years ago). All of our family and friends are there; but I donít know his family or friends all that well. Iím kind of like a shy/social anxiety person anyway and of course ALL of these people are great skin people and I know I will be so self concious and not want to go if I have a breakout at the time. I mean, shoot- here I am worried about it months ahead of time; that should say how much of a worry-wart I am.

Sorry this is long again; I babble pretty well :)

Have a great day; and think positively. Iím TRYING to.
hey JJ, Iím sorry that things are going like they are for you. Howís your face today? Improve any overnite?

I was exactly where you were at a couple weeks ago. A big welt on my cheek and like 5-8 (some old, some active) pimples all around my chin. Right now I still have the old marks that are fading away SLOWLY on my chin (like 5-6 of those) and a nodule on my cheek that Iím hoping will flatten out enough to Ĺ way cover with makeup by tomorrow. I thought all was going well until I woke up this morning with a new pimple under my lower lip. If I remember right, this is one that I messed with before, and it went away kinda quicklyÖ.wonder if itís just decided to come back for a second fight.

My forehead and nose are normally my safe spots; I rarely get anything on them. My cheeks normally are too, but the past few months Iíve had some bumps pop up.
I feel for you, because Iím able to basically come in and just work with the same handful of people and could hibernate in my cubicle all day. You have to work with all those children, so I suppose that it would be hard to do that AND have to deal with being in such a depressed mood. Donít feel bad for cancelling at your Grams; I would have done the same thing.

What have you been eating? Do you drink enough water or drink sodas? Have you given any more thought to doing a low carb/no wheat/no sugar diet? Have you ever tried Bactrim or are you allergic to sulfa drugs? Iíve been told that bactrim is a quick acting antibiotic that should clear you up, and is one of those ďlast alternatives before taking accutaneĒ, but not something to take long term. Thatís what Iím taking now. It hasnít cleared me completely by any means ---, but I do have a few things going on here, and I did still start the yasmin Ė so who knows where I would be if I wasnít taking it. In the past month Iíve:
1. stopped eating wheat
2. started the adrenal/b-vitamin supplements
3. started yasmin and bactrim
4. started applying tazorac to my trouble spots & rinsing it off (I know now to only do it at night!!!)
5. TRY my best to drink 8 glasses of water or tea a day. (do pretty good)
6. added to my daily vitamins I take.
a. Good quality multivitamin (has way more than the RDA% in it, which I was told wasnít enough for people to rely on)
b. Good quality calcium
c. Adrenal/B-vitamin pill
d. Extra calcium; magnesium, zinc (these are also in the multivitamin, so with both I think that I get as much zinc as I should without going overboard)
e. Evening primrose oil (donít know if this does anythign, but figure itís not hurting.
f. Vitamin E capsule
g. And I do a carrot/apple/spinach juice 5 days of the week w/added flax oil)

So, you see, I was making sure to drink the water and eating healthily for a long time now (even before the start of this month). I donít do perfect, but itís very frustrating to know that I do all of this and still break out but yet all these other people EAT CRAP !!!!! Itís nerve-wracking!!!!! And yeah, itís JUST NOT FAIR!

When you use the tazorac, do you put it on your whole face? I guess tazorac is just really exfoliating and can bring up the crud before it starts to prevent breakouts, so yeah, I guess you are right that it may be culprit. I know how you feel, but Iíd say to try my little routine with it at night Ė or even every other night just so that maybe then you will get used to it. ?????

Trust me, I know exactly what you mean about not wanting to see anyone, talk to anyoneÖ, I wonít even open my door to my neighbors most of the time and itís 100% because of my face (and god help me if Iíve just washed it and donít have on any makeup and we have someone pay us a ďsurpriseĒ visit. I just want to hide. I wish I was invisible..)

Take care, and keep your head up. I know itís easier said than done, but try and be thankful for the things that you do have, your close family and your caring boyfriend, etcÖ., things could me much worse. You could have acne AND be dying from some disease, AND be all alone. This is what I try, try, try to tell myself when I get so depressed. It doesnít work to get me out of the depression; but it lightens it a LITTLE bit, and I can use all the help I can get in those times. You arenít alone; I'm here for ya :wave:

Take care, and let me know how youíre doing.

Oh, and I've never done the massive dose B-5 thing..., thought about it, but just haven't done it yet.

I'm thinking that if the Yasmin and diet changes don't work, then I'm going to get on spironlactone. But, THE YASMIN IS GONNA WORK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

[This message has been edited by knut (edited 10-24-2003).]
Things are looking a little better today. I got myself so upset and worked up last night..and honestly where did it get me?? Absolutely no where. When I look back on the whole incident, I wish I could have somewhow remembered that. It's just so hard sometimes to remain calm and rational.
So like I said, I was up late, got all upset, and did no I ended up calling out of work today. I'm chalking it up to a mental health day. Oh happens. I know I can't make a habit out of this behavior...but one day won't hurt.
I'm going to the derm on Wed....a new derm. I've had this apt scheduled forever. Why does it seem so hard to get derm apts?? Anyways, I'm going to immediately mention Bactrim to her. I've got to get off these useless Ery Tabs..and I like the sound of Bactrim. Maybe that could be a good combo for me too..hopefully.
I think Tazorac is just too harsh for me. I only put it on problem areas and the result is never good. I have never used it faithfully for an extended period of time. The longest period being 3 weeks/a month tops. So maybe I just didn't give it enough time to do it's thing or maybe it's just not right for me. Who knows.
I'm giving this no wheat diet some serious consideration. It seems like it could be difficult for me though. I really do try to monitor what I eat...lots of fruits and veggies, low carbs (no potatoes, white bread, crackers, etc..) Occasionally I'll slip up and have some sort of treat. Like today...I couldn't help but to have a handful of peanut butter M&Ms. All I drink is either water or tea. That's it. I can't remember the last time I had juice. So my diet is by no means wonderful...but I really do make an effort.
I'm going to add zinc and b-5 into my vitamin regiment. We'll see. Today will be day 2 of Yasmin. Question for you...are you going to take the white pills or go straight through??
Oh well...that's all for now. I"m going to try to do something productive today. I'm going to try hard not even to think about my face at all. Much easier said than done.And tonight, I just want to have fun at the party. I absolutely HATE when this acne problem starts affecting all aspects of my life. This weekend I'm going to try and not let it get the best of me.
Do you have anything fun planned for the weekend?
Well thanks again for listening : )
talk to you soon,
Hey JJ,

Yeah, I was wondering what was going on with the board. I'm sure that I'll get used to it soon enough now that it's back up. I was checking it all the time too and real dissapointed when I couldn't get on. I used to post a lot, and read a lot, but now I pretty much just see if anything new/interesting has been posted and I reply to this thread.

My face is doing alright. I haven't had anything new in a few days, but my old ones are taking forever to go away. It is weird how you can have breakouts in these weird patterns. Like, I can understand breaking out from sugar, or wheat, or some food, or whatever - but breakout from a friday or saturday? Who knows. All you can do is just try and monitor what you eat, and then see how your face does a few days after. It's hard, and sometimes it makes no sense at all - which could mean it's a hormone thing - and who can monitor that??

Along with that, who really knows how both a birth control that is supposed to help acne and antibiotics that you're taking for acne are going to get along in your system at the same time. I do know that antibiotics can decrease the effectiveness of the actual birth control if taken together, but I can't see how it would do anything to stop the skin-helping-factors. I mean, the active ingredient in the antibiotic couldn't do anything to interfere with the progestin/androgen/estrogen work that the yasmin is doing.

I'm glad that you found that wash! I used to go to wal mart all the time until we moved and the nearest walmart is the crappiest store around. It's always a nasty mess and I just won't go in there for anything. Anyway, yeah, I use it twice a day. I normally take a quick shower before I go to bed every night. I saw the oil decrease right away, like definitely within a coupld of days. So, did you start using it just once a day or just waiting to start using it? It is proably good to start off just once a day, because it is medicated and can dry out your face. You may not have any problem if you aren't too sensitive.

Well, nothing else is really going on here. I finally got the tickets for flying back home at christmas. I got the news today that a friend of mine from my work back home passed away. Flippin heart attack like at his mid 40s. Terrible, so I've been sad all day. And now I'm sitting here watching that show that John Ritter was in and it's just hard not to cry.... So, anyway, that's where I'm at today.

I hope that you have a great week - I've been tearin up the halloween candy too :)

Bethymarie -
I'm not real sure what's goin on with you. Everything that I've read has said that Yasmin would decrease oil - if anything...., but of course, what does that mean? Everyone is different. Did your breakouts occur within a week of having your period (a week of not taking the pills)? It's possible that may lead to a breakout - I'm guessing.

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