The Roaccutane Diaries – Week 1
Okay, so I’m not actually on Roaccutane, I’m on Oratane, which is just the generic, I thought I’d just get that out the way.
I’ve always had bad skin. I’ve had acne since I was a preteen. I can remember sitting next to my mom in bed in the evenings when my dad was at work, complaining about the little pimples on my cheeks. It got progressively worse, to a point where my cheeks and forehead were covered with angry red and white acne. I heard it all, from “zitso” to “pizzaface”. You know, the usual cruelty of teenagers. Over the last 15 years I’ve tried everything BUT roaccutane. My mother refused to let me take it, instead putting me on the pill, which did nothing. Over the years I’ve also tried every skin care routine from Oxy, to Benzac, to Young Solutions, to Nivea, to Neutrogena, you name it, I’ve tried it.
I was very lucky, my severe acne didn’t affect my self-esteem throughout high school. Somehow I didn’t notice I had severe acne, and I only really started noticing the acne during my early 20s. that’s when I started wearing makeup, and when the dermatillomania started. Since then, while my skin has improved, it’s nowhere near what my skin should look like at 27. It’s probably not so bad that a lot of people would look at me and say “jeez, you should do something about your skin” but after 15 years of struggling, I gave up. I made the jump and visited a dermatologist (for the first time in my life) and asked the doctor to put me on something.
The consultation was pretty standard, he had a look at my face under a magnifying light and told me that I have a lot of congestion under the skin, as well as reactive rosacea, and then had a look at my back and shoulders where my acne is getting progressively worse. He agreed that I needed to take something and prescribed 40mg of Oratane a day. He sent me off with a stack of papers to read, a prescription as well as a form for blood tests. He also sent me off to the aesthetician who suggested a salicylic peel and some light therapy. I had my blood tests done, and besides my cholesterol coming back a bit high (but lower than it was the last time I had it tested, not something I wasn’t aware of), I was given a clean bill of health and told I have a very healthy liver. So off to Clicks I went, and collected my pills and I started taking them on Monday. I also went for my peel on Friday and light therapy (not something I think I’ll be doing again – the little goggles completely cut off my sense of sight, making it impossible to judge how far the light was from me, and made me insanely claustrophobic, and resulted in a panic attack).
So far I’ve experienced a bit of dry skin on my legs and my lips are already chapped but I’ve experienced none of the other symptoms they’ve warned of. From the Oratane website, I can possibly experience the following:
- Dry skin
- Dry eyes
- Chapped lips
- Dry anus & vagina (my personal favourites)
- Sun sensitivity
Of course, there is also the “do not get pregnant” warning, which is really not something I’m planning on doing.
So far the first 6 days have been bearable, but I am only 6 days in and I have 6 months to go – which should give me enough time before the wedding for my skin to settle itself down.
I’ll keep you all updated on how it goes, as I’m quite excited for the day I don’t have to wear layers of makeup or worry about wearing makeup on my body on my wedding day.
Of course, my skin is the clearest it’s been in FOREVER when I decided to take my “Week 1” selfies, but you get the idea. Normally my forehead is covered in very angry, red little pimples and my skin is red across my cheeks.
Hugs & sloppy daxie kisses