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    Benzoyl Peroxide

    Information about Benzoyl Peroxide

    Benzoyl peroxide uses

    Benzoyl Peroxide is used in the treatment of acne.

    How benzoyl peroxide works

    Benzoyl Peroxide is an organic compound. It has a keratolytic property, i.e., it even out the uneven skin. When applied on acne, it releases oxygen which kills the bacteria. This is how it works to cure your acne.

    Common side effects of benzoyl peroxide

    Dry skin, Erythema (skin redness), Burning sensation, Itching, Skin irritation
    Content Details
    Written By
    Dr. Anuj Saini
    Reviewed By
    Dr. Shilpa Garcha
    MD (Pharmacology), MBBS
    Last updated on:
    18 Feb 2020 | 05:21 PM (IST)
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    Read Our Editorial Policy

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    Expert advice for Benzoyl Peroxide

    • You have been prescribed Benzoyl Peroxide for the treatment of Acne.
    • Do not apply it on sunburned or damaged skin.
    • Be careful when applying Benzoyl Peroxide to large areas since it can bleach hair, clothing, and furnishings upon contact.
    • It makes the skin more sensitive towards sunlight. Hence, apply it at night time and avoid excessive sun exposure. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors.
    • It may cause skin dryness or stinging sensation. In case you experience excessive irritation or allergy, discontinue the medication and consult your doctor.

    Frequently asked questions for Benzoyl Peroxide

    Benzoyl Peroxide

    Q. How should Benzoyl Peroxide be applied?

    You should remove all of the make-up. Wash your hands and the affected area and gently dry. Put a thin layer of Benzoyl Peroxide cream on the affected skin, using your fingertips. Apply it to the entire area affected by acne, not just each spot. After applying, wash your hands thoroughly with water.

    Q. Should Benzoyl Peroxide be left on overnight?

    At the beginning of the treatment, Benzoyl Peroxide is usually used once daily in the evening. The area is not washed off after application of Benzoyl Peroxide, so it can be left overnight unless you experience irritation. However, if you experience irritation, consult your doctor.

    Q. What should prompt me to discontinue Benzoyl Peroxide?

    You should discontinue Benzoyl Peroxide and consult your doctor if you experience severe local irritation, which means severe redness, dryness and itching and stinging/burning sensation.

    Q. What precautions should be followed while applying Benzoyl Peroxide?

    Use Benzoyl Peroxide only on your skin. Keep it away from areas like your eyes, eyelids, lips, mouth and inside of the nose. If the medicine comes in contact with any of these areas, wash the affected area with water immediately. Avoid using Benzoyl Peroxide on scratched or eroded skin and open wounds. Take care when using Benzoyl Peroxide on sensitive areas of skin such as your neck. Benzoyl Peroxide can make your skin more sensitive to the harmful effects of the sunlight. So, avoid the use of sunbeds/lamps and minimize the time you spend in the sun. You should use sunscreen and wear protective clothing while using Benzoyl Peroxide. Avoid contact with hair as Benzoyl Peroxide has bleaching properties. It can even bleach dyed or colored fabric, furniture or carpeting.

    Q. How often should I apply Benzoyl Peroxide?

    The initial dose is preferably once daily in the evening. Later, the doctor will gradually increase the dose to twice daily (most probably morning and evening).

    Q. How long does Benzoyl Peroxide take to show its effects?

    You may see an improvement after 4-6 weeks of treatment. You may need to use this treatment for longer to see the full benefits. This is normal for acne treatments. If your acne does not get better after 1 month or if it gets worse, talk to your doctor immediately.

    Q. Do you apply moisturizer before or after Benzoyl Peroxide?

    You may apply moisturizer an hour after applying Benzoyl Peroxide. Consult your doctor in case of any doubt or concern.

    Content on this page was last updated on 18 February, 2020, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)