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About Acne

Acne is a skin condition that occurs when oil and dead skin cells clog up your pores causing pimples, whiteheads, or blackheads. It can occur in people of all ages but is most common during puberty, when sebaceous glands activate, producing oil.

Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States, affecting up to 50 million Americans each year. Though it is not dangerous, it can be uncomfortable and may leave scars.

Types of Acne

Acne is a broad term to describe the skin condition that is caused by clogged pores on the surface of the skin. However, acne can vary in form and severity. There are a number of different types of acne conditions, including:

Blackheads: Blackheads are open, but clogged pores. Dead skin and sebum collect in the pore, causing a small red bump, and air exposure causes the open pore to discolor.

Whiteheads: Whiteheads are similar to blackheads, except the pore is closed to the air, causing a white tip.

Papules: Papules are small, red bumps caused by oil and dead skin cells clogging pores on the surface of the skin.

Pustules (or pimples): Pimples are small red bumps like papules, but are filled with pus. The pus in a pimple causes a small white tip to form on the bump.

Nodules: Nodules are firm, skin colored bumps that live deep under the skin. These bumps can be painful and difficult to treat with over-the-counter medication.

Cysts: Cystic acne describes large, inflamed, and painful lesions that are found deep beneath the skin. Cystic acne is softer than nodules, due to the infections being filled with pus. These bumps can burst, causing further infection to the skin surrounding the cyst. Cysts are caused by clogged material deep within the pore of the skin. This type of acne can be very difficult to treat, and can result in scarring of the skin, if improperly treated.

Acne Causes

Acne is a skin condition that is occurs when the pores on the surface of the skin become clogged by hair follicles, oily skin, bacteria, and dead skin cells.

Hair follicles in the skin are connected to oil glands (sebaceous glands) that produce oil on the skin called sebum. When androgen hormones become active during puberty, these follicles can become sensitive to excess sebum and bacteria on the skin. As oil builds up in the pores of the skin, they become infected and inflamed. This inflammation eventually becomes a pimple, a whitehead (a closed pore), a blackhead (an open pore), or a pimple (pustule with pus at the tip).

Some common acne triggers/ irritants include:

Hormonal changes: Fluctuating levels of the androgen hormone during puberty or around a woman’s period can cause excess sebum production, leading to clogged pores.

Medications: Certain medications such as corticosteroids, birth control pills, or testosterone can cause hormonal change and can lead to clogged pores.

Makeup or personal care products: Some cosmetic products and oily skin care products (like oily lotion, pomade, and face cream) can cause pores to clog. Most products are now tested to avoid clogging pores, and carry the label non-comedogenic.

Air pollution or weather: Heavy polluted air, or humid air can cause excess sweat and oil build up on the skin, which can lead to clogged pores.

Clothing: Clothing pressed tight against the skin of the torso, legs, or face can cause irritation, which leads to clogged pores.

Acne Complications

Severe acne breakouts can lead to acne scars on the face and body. According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), acne scars can become more pronounced with age as the body loses collagen. This can make scarring from acne breakouts stubborn and hard to get rid of. The AAD recommends clearing skin of acne breakouts prior to undergoing treatment for acne scars.

Treatment Options
Aside from prescription medication, there are a number of treatment options used for acne. During your appointment, talk to your provider about the treatment plan that's best for you.
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Sesame FAQs

Frequently asked questions about acne treatment on Sesame

Sesame offers convenient and affordable online doctor visits with licensed health providers across the country. If you are experiencing the signs of acne, book a visit right away for a diagnosis and treatment plan.

Online doctor visits can be conducted in the comfort and privacy of your own home. During your visit, you will be asked about your symptoms and health history.

If your doctor determines that you are experiencing acne, they will discuss a treatment plan with you. This may include prescription medication, depending on the severity of your condition. If appropriate, your doctor can prescribe medication through Sesame. Depending on the medication, you can have your prescription delivered to your home or ready for same-day pickup at a pharmacy of your choice. Book a visit today to get started on treatment right away.

Doctors on Sesame can provide a range of dermatology services for a range of skin conditions over video including dermatitis, eczema, rashes, warts, acne, and more. To make the most out of your video visit, make sure you have a strong wifi condition or any photos you can share with your doctor that will help them diagnose or treat your condition. Keep in mind that your doctor may recommend in-person follow-up care, especially if you have a severe condition, need a biopsy, or require more extensive screening.

Yep! Telehealth has made it easier than ever to speak to a licensed dermatologist from the comfort of your home. Sesame offers video skin consults with real, quality doctors near you. Dermatologists on Sesame can diagnose a wide range of skin conditions including:

  • Acne
  • Eczema
  • Rashes
  • Psoriasis
  • Hair loss
  • Atopic dermatitis
  • Warts

Search for the doctor you want to see, compare prices, and save up to 60% on your visit with our affordable cash-pay prices. Sesame works directly with doctors - not insurance networks- so you don't ever have to worry about surprise bills or copays. Just quality care at affordable prices. Book a skin care visit with a doctor near you today!

Video skin consultations are a form of dermatology care used to connect patients to primary care providers and board-certified dermatologists, for skin health conditions such as acne, warts, moles, and skin cancers, as well as urgent care concerns such as bug bites, burns, rashes, and cold sores.

Sesame offers both dermatology and skin consult appointments via video visits. Video skin consults are primarily used to help patients with urgent care concerns regarding the skin (such as those listed above). However, these visits can also help individuals determine whether or not they need to see a specialist to address their concerns. If you aren't sure whether or not you need to see a dermatologist, video skin consultations may be helpful in answering some of your questions and helping you with next steps.

Online skin doctor appointments use video chat platforms (like Zoom, Skype, or Facetime) to connect you to a doctor. It is recommended that you find a private place with a strong internet connection for your video visit.

Your doctor will ask you questions about any medical conditions and skin problems you have experienced. This is a good time to discuss symptoms or any specific concerns you have. They will also ask you questions about your skin care routine, and medications you may be taking. While some of these questions may not seem related to skin health, they may help doctors get a better understanding of your general health and wellness.

Your doctor may then conduct a visual examination of your skin. You may be asked to disrobe, which is why a private and secure location is recommended for these visits. Doctors will check your skin for signs of skin problems such as:

  • Skin cancer
  • Burns
  • Bug bites
  • Rashes
  • Suspicious moles
  • Warts

Depending on their findings, doctors may request a follow-up appointment to discuss the results of the exam with you. While doctors are able to diagnose a number of conditions via video visits, an in-person visit may be required to definitively diagnose certain conditions. If your doctor suspects you may be exhibiting some warning signs of skin cancer, for example, you may be asked to go to their office for a biopsy.

If you do not require a follow-up appointment, but your doctor determines that medication may be appropriate as treatment, they can write a prescription after your visit and order free delivery to your home. Before beginning treatment with any medication, be sure to talk to your doctor about dosage and how best to administer the drug.

Yes! Sesame makes it easier than ever to get a new prescription or refill a prescription from the comfort of your own home! To discuss a new online prescription or refill, book a video visit with a doctor or nurse on Sesame to discuss a new online prescription or refill. Clinicians on Sesame can prescribe drugs that help treat conditions like acne.

Note that providers on Sesame cannot prescribe controlled substances.

Book a video visit on based on the health care you need, and pick up a new prescription or existing prescription refill at a pharmacy of your choice. Browse services on Sesame, set up an appointment with a real doctor at your convenience, and get the care you need.

Booking an appointment with a doctor or nurse online is typically the fastest way to get a prescription! Sesame offers same-day online doctor prescription and prescription refill appointments with board-certified healthcare professionals. If deemed clinically necessary, Sesame providers can provide prescriptions and prescription refills for most non-controlled substances. They can also provide you with a doctor’s note if necessary.

Most online prescription and prescription refill appointments take around 15 minutes, and providers are able to send a prescription to a pharmacy of your choice right after your appointment.

It is not legally possible to get prescription medications online without a doctor or nurse practitioner writing a prescription. You can see a doctor virtually - via telehealth - to write most scripts without seeing a doctor in person.

At Sesame, we make speaking with a doctor about writing a first time prescription or prescription refill easy, convenient, and inexpensive.

Speak with the doctor of your choosing in minutes. Pay a fair cash price for the consultation. If clinically appropriate, the doctor can write the script and have it sent to the local pharmacy of your choice within minutes.

Sesame even offers a discount card that can help you receive up to 85% off your prescriptions at your local pharmacy.

Sesame offers online prescription and refill services at affordable prices, starting at just $34. If a new prescription is determined necessary by a provider, clinicians on Sesame can prescribe medication that helps treat blood pressure, infections, allergies, cholesterol problems, thyroid conditions, and more!

Yep! If you request a prescription transfer, you can easily move your prescription from one pharmacy to another. Plus, many pharmacies now offer mail services for home delivery. Here's how to request a prescription refill at a different pharmacy:

1) Call your new preferred pharmacy to request a transfer.

2) Provide that pharmacy with health insurance/ prescription info

3) Wait for the prescription to be transferred before you pick it up. It usually takes pharmacies a few days to transfer a prescription, but you will get a notification once this step has been completed. Either go pick up your prescription in person or set up home delivery.

If you need a prescription refill, book a visit with a real, quality doctor on Sesame today. Doctors on Sesame can refill prescriptions for high blood pressure, birth control, allergies, and more! Save up to 60% on your prescription refill visit when you book with Sesame.

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