Postpartum Acne And How To Get Rid Of It

Postpartum Acne And How To Get Rid Of It

Postpartum acne usually occurs after pregnancy thanks to new hormones which are released into your body when you get pregnant. This is how to treat them

A lot of women talk about how wondrous childbirth is. And they are right. But some less wondrous things also come with the territory. Your body experiences changes that may feel weird. Some parts of the skin may stretch to reveal stretch marks. You may lose more hair than the average person. Skin discolouration and breast changes. Postpartum acne is one of the changes that may also come with the territory. And this article will include how to get rid of postpartum acne.

For some women, acne breakouts happen during pregnancy. While for others it happens after childbirth. And sometimes the reverse is the case for some women. Existing acne may clear during pregnancy or a few weeks after. Depends on the body type. 

Postpartum acne: what is it? Is it normal?

postpartum acne


Acne is the breakout people have when they reach puberty, an age when sexual organs have matured and they're capable of reproducing. Most people in Nigeria refer to acne as pimples. And then postpartum acne is the breakout some women have after they have given birth. Acne appears mostly on the face but can extend to other parts of the body as well. 

Postpartum acne is completely normal. For some new mothers, it goes away on its own. While for others it may need a bit of encouragement to disappear. So just because your sister's or friend's cleared after giving birth doesn't mean yours will clear too. But the bottom line is that it's all very normal. 

Causes of postpartum acne 

Below are a few reasons why acne breakouts happen after childbirth. 

  • Hormone level 

Pregnancy is a time in a woman's life when hormonal changes become quite erratic. And this is easily the main reason why most women experience postpartum acne breakouts. Additionally, breastfeeding sometimes triggers the release of hormones that can also trigger the breakout of postpartum acne. For some women, the hormone levels go down immediately after giving birth. But for others, it takes a few weeks. 

  • Dehydration 

The water level in the body is to be kept high after childbirth. Dehydration causes a break in the outer layer of the skin, triggering acne breakouts. Breastfeeding is a medium for losing water from the new mother's body. So she will need to consume a lot of liquid to keep things balanced. 

  • Stress

The arrival of a newborn is a territory that requires a bit of adjusting because it comes with a lot of stress. For first time mothers especially. You are struggling to get a grip on some things and this can easily affect the amount of sleep you get in a day. Combined with hydration this can cause acne breakouts. 

How to get rid of acne after pregnancy

postpartum acne

The treatment of postpartum acne falls under two categories. Treatments for when you're breastfeeding and when you're not. 

  • Treatments when you're breastfeeding 

During pregnancy, you are advised to mind the medications you take. The case is the same when you're breastfeeding. Some medications can disrupt the flow of breastmilk. So for treating mild acne when you're breastfeeding you can try products containing salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, or glycolic acid. However, if breakouts are serious, go for topical antibiotics, azelaic acid, and prescription benzoyl peroxide. 

  • Treatments when you're not breastfeeding 

When you're not breastfeeding you have a bit more freedom to explore treatments. Oral contraceptives are great because they help with the root cause of postpartum acne breakouts. They regulate these hormones. Also, you can go for the treatment listed above. And your doctor may recommend topical retinoids or oral acne medications.

Other treatments 

Other treatments may include skincare products, keeping your skin moisturized, and reducing stress to avoid further acne breakouts. Eat a balanced diet and try to reduce exposure to the skin because after childbirth the skin is at its most sensitive. 

Though acne breakout is completely normal, if they are painful and inflamed, showing up in unusual places on your body, please see your doctor. 

Read also: The Best Nigerian Skincare Secrets

Written by

Lydia Ume