Depicted above is a molecule of Adapalene, a topical retinoid used in the treatment of acne vulgaris.
Retinoids and Retinization
Retinoids and Retinization
Topical retinoids like Adapalene Gel are recommended by dermatologists as a first line of treatment for acne. Despite the long-term benefits, you may experience a few mild side effects at first. These side effects may occur while your skin adjusts to the retinoid treatment. Rest assured, these are temporary and should start to subside typically by the fourth week of use. Read on to learn more about how to manage retinization.
What is Retinization?
Retinization is the adjustment period in which the skin adapts to a retinoid treatment. During this time, skin may become irritated, resulting in dryness, scaling, redness or a burning or stinging sensation. These symptoms should begin to subside by Week 4 of use. Using a non-medicated moisturizer is highly recommended to address these side effects.
Will I Experience Retinization?
Not everyone experiences side effects and, as with any topical product, there is no way to know how your skin will react to Adapalene Gel before you try it. Some users with sensitive or dry skin may experience retinization. However, in clinical studies, average side effects were less than mild. If you do experience retinization, remember that it is a normal part of the process for some and it should subside after two to four weeks. Plus, there are steps you can take to help mitigate any discomfort.
How Long Does Retinization Last?
Retinization typically occurs early when you start your retinoid treatment, and side effects will lessen with ongoing use as your skin adjusts to the Adapalene Gel.
Should I Stop My Retinoid Treatment Because of Retinization?
If irritation becomes severe, stop use and see a doctor. But it is not always necessary to discontinue use if you begin to notice retinization. Instead, try these suggestions to help minimize side effects:
- To help decrease dryness always use a non-medicated moisturizer before or after applying Adapalene Gel.
- Avoid using products that contain harsh chemicals, alpha hydroxy acid or glycolic acid that may worsen the irritation. Irritation is also more likely to occur if you are using more than one topical acne medication at a time.
- Be consistent: apply Adapalene Gel at the same time, every day, preferably at night. If you do use Adapalene Gel during the day, allow to fully dry then follow with a sunscreen application if going outdoors.
- If you are using Adapalene Gel every day, try reducing usage to every other day or every third day, especially if you have sensitive skin.
- Adapalene Gel should not be used more than once a day. Applying more than directed will not provide faster or better results.
Retinization and Retinoids: The Bottom Line
Try not to be discouraged if you experience retinization. Adapalene Gel is working hard to clear and prevent acne, restore skin texture and tone, and regulate skin cell turnover to keep pores from clogging. Making ProactivMD part of your daily skin care routine is the key to seeing long-term results.
Significant results are normally seen at 12 weeks. During that time Adapalene Gel is working hard to prevent new acne outbreaks so that you’ll have continually clear skin. With continued use, your results will get better and better over time.