Christine Paz 3 photoWhen Christina Paz (38), a Vancouver medical office assistant, started developing acne in her mid-twenties, she had no idea it would get so bad most of her face would look like “road rash” just 18 months later.
But that’s how she describes the clusters of red, irritated and painful spots that covered her cheeks and forehead at the height of her acne struggle.
Christina, who largely escaped acne as a teen, was working at a doctor’s office when she started getting more and more spots. “I tried so many creams, pads and lotions, but my acne just got worse,” she says.
“My way of coping was to put on lots of make-up. I would not leave the house without it. It was so embarrassing and affected my self-confidence in talking to people. The face is the first thing you see when you meet someone. I felt down, sometimes anxious, and even angry that I could not get rid of my acne.”
After a year, she visited her family doctor, tried various treatments which did not work for her, and was referred to a dermatologist. She then began six months of treatment with a drug for severe acne which she says “saved me”. Her acne slowly cleared and happily for her, has not returned.
“My advice to anyone with acne is simply this: If it’s bothering you and interfering with your life, get professional help. I may have waited too long. Also be patient. Acne is a challenge. It got worse before it got better.
“It was a long 6 months but I am so glad I did it. I leave the house with no makeup now … and a lot less stress about my skin.”