Acne, hormones and IVF

There are no absolute definitive causes for acne since there are so many factors in play: hormones, hygiene, genetics, external pollutants, and dietary influences, just to name a few. I notice I get my biggest breakouts when I’ve eaten far too much sugar consistently over a week, and or when my time of the month is due, but despite my own personal experience, I can’t demonise sugar all together as the be all and end all cause of my acne issues, because it doesn’t always happen that way. I’ve suffered cystic acne since I was 12 and I’m now kissing 30 and if anything, the acne has gotten worse, the older I’ve become.

Fast forward to now and I’m really annoyed today about the massive breakout that has erupted underneath my skin that makes me look like I have mumps on the left side of my face. No exaggeration, just horrific, pus-filled horror, that only looks half as bad as it feels (and boy does it feel painful). Makeup concealed the growing beast but at some point before I go to bed, I’ll have to remove the warpaint and reveal just how big and wide the monster has grown. Oh, I also have a nice big pea sized gem right between my eyes, just for good measure it seems.

As I’ve mentioned in a few previous posts, I’ve been undergoing IVF and before the actual IVF phase, I underwent hormone suppressant treatments in the form of monthly injections, one per month, that would shrink any remaining endometriosis by suppressing the production of Estrogen, and therefore starving the endometriosis of its food source (Estrogen).  During this time, my skin was the clearest its ever been, but my mood and state of mind, at the lowest point its ever been too (to the point of suicidal thoughts). I was low. I had amazing skin, but I was lower than I’d ever been. I was determined to see it through and made it and looking back it was a very difficult obstacle, but one I’ve passed.

So I’ve come to realise that hormones play a HUGE role in how my skin looks and feels and behaves. I had always come to think that it was mainly diet, genetics and lifestyle, but my production of estrogen (when I was producing none in particular) made a huge difference to the quality of my skin and whether or not acne was present. Little estrogen meant my skin was amazing, and a lot of estrogen meant my skin was horrendous. Unfortunately, the side effect of little estrogen and amazing skin, was constantly feeling depressed to the point of having recurring ‘dark thoughts’ and because I was undergoing this treatment for something more important (IVF), I was determined to see things through.

I’m currently approaching the end of my first IVF cycle and will be taking a pregnancy test in a few days. I’m cautiously optimistic yet in my heart I feel I’ve failed this cycle. The body does what it wants despite all the good things I do and the things I’ve done right. It’s a roll of the dice and I have no control of its outcome. All I can do is hope for a good result and be prepared for a bad one.

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One comment

  1. “I feel I’ve failed this cycle” — You didn’t fail, you did everything absolutely right.

    *The cycle* failed, but that was *in spite of* everything you did right. Some times the world is just like that. It certainly wasn’t *you* failing.

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