Why Do Acne Scars Occur
Why do some people have acne scars, while others dont?
The reasons vary, but genetics is one risk factor for scarring. If a blood relative struggles with acne scarring, you might, too, according to the American Academy of Dermatology . Also, scarring tends to happen more as the skin loses collagen with age.
Because collagen plays a role in the healing process, your skin produces new collagen as it repairs itself after a breakout. But sometimes, it produces too little or too much, resulting in a scar.
Keep in mind that acne is an inflammatory condition. Scar development has a lot to do with the extent and duration of skin inflammation, so delaying acne treatment raises the risk of scarring, according to the AAD.
Acne scars result from a complex and abnormal inflammatory response, which results in poor wound healing, says Kara Shah, MD, a board-certified general and pediatric dermatologist with Kenwood Dermatology in Cincinnati.
Because scarring is a complication of acne, anyone who experiences a breakout can have temporary or permanent scars, according to the NHS yet scarring is most common in those who suffer from inflammatory acne characterized by numerous pimples and cysts, says Dr. Shah.
How Can Acne Scars Be Avoided
There are some practices that you may engage in on a regular basis that, regrettably, increase the likelihood of your acne leaving scars. Acne scars are significantly more difficult to treat than pimples, so if you can avoid them in the first place, your skin will thank you from the bottom of its heart .
Dermabrasion For Pimple Scars
Dermabrasion is similar to laser resurfacing. Your doctor uses a mechanical instrument to slowly remove the top layer of skin. A smooth layer of new skin replaces the scarred layer as you heal. This procedure is effective against surface pimple scars and typically requires a week of recovery.â
There is another treatment called microdermabrasion. It involves a series of treatments with shorter recovery times.
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Try Led Light Therapy
LED Light grows collagen in quantifiable percentages, Vargas explains. In my salon, we do several different treatments that involve LED light, but by far the most popular is my patented RevitaLight Bed which gives a client a full body treatment of healing LED…Its sort of like having a magic wand.
Diy Treatments For Acne Scars
Natural treatments for acne scars are unlikely to be effective for moderate to severe scarring but they can be beneficial for minor or fresh scars and to boost your current treatment regimen. To avoid any unwanted effects its best to check with your dermatologist before incorporating them into your routine.
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How To Prevent Acne Scarring
The number one thing you can do to prevent acne scarring from ever happening in the first place is keeping your hands off your breakouts. Let’s be clear: No matter how tempting it may be, you should never, ever pick at or pop your pimples. It is most important that you do not attempt to pop your pimples or pick at any scabs, as this can result in permanent acne scarring, Green emphasizes.
If you have incessant whiteheads or severe cystic acne, this can be especially tricky, as the breakouts seem visually persistent. Fortunately, there are OTC products to help make dealing with these breakouts less of a trigger.
For cystic breakouts, Vargas touts Renee Rouleaus Anti-Bump serum as a means for reducing inflammation.
When it comes to pus-tipped pimples, try Starfaces Hydro-Stars, which employ a 100-percent hydrocolloid dressing meant to effectively suck all the gunk out of your zits so you dont have to pick and prod to do so yourself.
Finally, a derm-loved favorite for acne, retinoids, are a great way to heal existing breakouts and prevent incoming acne lesions as retinol helps to exfoliate dead skin cells out of pores “They also work to normalize skin cell turnover and act as an anti-inflammatory, says Levin. “Furthermore, have been proven to improve skin discoloration and texture and, therefore, restore the skin from prior outbreaks.” Retinoids also boost collagen production which is great for plumping the pitting caused by scars.
Is Surgery Performed To Remove Acne Scars
Sometimes minor surgery is considered to treat certain types of acne scars. These surgeries lift scar tissue closer to the surface of the skin to make indentations less noticeable. They may completely remove the scar or break up scar tissue, allowing new collagen to form and smooth out the scar. Surgery is performed in your dermatologists office and you remain awake but the treatment area is numbed so you dont feel pain. Often surgery is followed by other types of acne scar removal treatments.
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Don’t Give Up Hope On Your Acne Scars
Acne scarring is often a tricky issue to deal with, even among dermatologists. Yet, there are many proven natural remedies to fight your blemish battles. For more stubborn cases, try in-office treatments like chemical peels and microneedling.
The bottom line is to not give up hope on treating your acne scars. Give each scar treatment a go to see which works best for you. While acne scarring may be difficult to tackle, it’s definitely not impossible.
Injections For Acne Scars
Injections are used for a variety of cosmetic treatments. Steroid injections are the most common and are used for raised pimple scars.
Steroid injections soften and flatten swollen scars. Injection treatments often require multiple visits. More intensive treatment may be required if your scars donât respond to the injections.
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What Are The Types Of Acne And What Do They Look Like
Acne presents as many different forms. Whiteheads and blackheads are typical and tend to heal smoothly more often than not. Then there are the types that can lead to scarring:
- Papules: Pink to red bumps that hurt when you touch them.
- Pustules: Pus-filled lesions. Theyre red at the base and white or yellow at the top.
- Nodules: Solid lesions. Theyre larger than papules and pustules and can hurt more because they extend deeper into the skin.
- Cysts: Cysts lie deep within the skin. Theyre painful, full of pus and are most likely to scar.
Should I See A Dermatologist For Acne Scars
You should not give up if you have tried every acne scarring treatment available over the counter and have seen no results. This is a good sign that it is time to schedule an appointment with your local dermatologist. A dermatologist can prescribe powerful topical solutions, as well as a tailored treatment plan, in addition to the powerful topical solutions.
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For Hypertrophic Scars Try Steroid Injections
Steroid injections are the best treatment for hypertrophic scars, Green says point blank. The injections break up the fibrous tissue beneath the skin, reducing the size of the scar. In addition to steroid injections, Green says that VBeam pulsed-dye lasers can also be used to treat hypertrophic scars in addition to any residual redness from the scar.
What Can I Expect If I Have Acne Scars
Acne is very common. Its likely that most people you know either have or have had it at some point, probably when they were teenagers. Expect to have to make choices choices about if you will or will not get treatment and choices about the type of treatment. Expect to have the scars for most if not all of your life if you decide not to get treatment. Even with treatment, acne scars are difficult to heal. Theres no 100% guarantee that the acne scars will be completely gone. But most treatments reduce the size of the acne scars and make them less visible.
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What Are The Types Of Acne Scars
- Atrophic scar: This develops when there is loss of skin tissue.
- Ice pick scar: These are usually small and make noticeable holes in your skin.
- Boxcar scar: These are depressed areas that are usually round or oval with sharp edges and very similar to chickenpox scars.
- Rolling scar: These are typically seen on your lower cheeks and jaws where your skin is thicker. The indentations slope and produce uneven wavy skin.
Give Your Skin A Deep Exfoliating Clean With Salicylic Acid
Salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid that is lipophilic, which means it likes to mingle with oils. This property allows it to penetrate deep into pores and clean them out. Alpha hydroxy acids, like glycolic and lactic acids, are hydrophilic, so they dont penetrate pores as well, but they are effective at exfoliating dead skin and preventing pores from clogging. Camp suggests cleansing with this gentle face cleanser by CeraVe, which contains salicylic acid and can be used to treat acne on the face, shoulders, and back.
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At Home Treatments For Acne Scarring
There are a ton of creams and serums available over the counter now.Look for these active ingredients for the best results:
An acne treatment that also smooths any scars.
But they can make your skin very sensitive to the sun, so ALWAYS wear sunscreen when using anything that contains retinoids.
Milder retinoid creams are available over the counter, but your dermatologist can also prescribe higher concentrations.
Best for: Atrophic scars and discoloration.
Acne responds really well to treatments containing salicylic acid – unclogging pores, reducing inflammation and redness, as well as exfoliating your skin. On top of that its also an excellent treatment for getting rid of acne scars.
You can add products with salicylic acid into your daily routine or use it for less frequent chemical peels.
However, you dont want to unbalance your skin. So its better to use a treatment with a low percentage of salicylic acid.
Only target the area where you have a scar, so you wont dry out the surrounding skin.
And it might take a few weeks to see an improvement.
Best for: All acne scars.
But you can also use it in a more intense concentration in a serum or at-home chemical peel.
Best for: All types of acne scars.
Vitamin C serums
Vitamin C comes packed with antioxidants which are anti-inflammatory and skin brightening so they fade the appearance of acne scars.
Radio Frequency + Microneedling
RF microneedling takes dermarolling and adds an energy component, namely radio frequencies. Like light waves, sound waves can also stimulate a physical response. When combined with microneedling, the skin is even more activated to start rebuilding. This somewhat recent acne scar treatment method has proven effective at softening up acne scar pigmentation.
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How Do I Prevent Acne Scars
If you tend to breakout, youre probably wondering what you can do for acne scars. Here are some great tips:
Treat Skin Before Pimples Develop If you know you tend to get pimples, seek out treatment before a breakout occurs. There are medications you can get from the dermatologist, and there are also natural products like Proactiv, Obagi, Murad Skin Care, and Jeunesse which can help.
Leave the Pimples Alone Many people like to pop a pimple or squeeze the contents. However, this is something you should avoid. It worsens the infection and inflammation, leading to more profound scarring.
Treat Your Acne As soon as you have a breakout, go to a dermatologist and treat the condition. The sooner you deal with the acne, the less likely it will lead to scarring.
Use Gentle Skin Care Products Whatever you do, do not use products that are abrasive as they could further damage your skin. Buy gentle and best anti-wrinkle creams and serums that will nourish and soften such as Noxzema, Rodan and Fields, Perricone MD, Clinique, and Image Skin Care.
Dont Touch Scabs When scabs develop on your skin after an acne breakout, do not pick or scratch them. Dont touch them at all. By picking at scabs, you can create acne scars.
Use Sunscreen The suns rays can cause further damage to your sensitive skin and worsen the possibility of having scarring Make sure you wear sunblock every day no matter what the season to protect yourself.
Can Dermatologists Remove Acne Dark Spots
For cosmetic reasons, hyperpigmentation is a skin condition that causes acne. A skin specialist can assess the intensity of the dark spots and suggest which treatments are most effective. Dark spots can fade on their own or as a result of treatment, but they can take months to fade. It may take months to years for the spots to fade.
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What Is The Best Way To Get Rid Of Acne Scars
I wish acne was a bit less difficult to deal with. I just mean a smidgeon. When you believe youve gotten rid of the red pimples, they leave a large dark pink blue scar that makes things worse.
Acne scars on the face, chest, and back are fairly common, if thats any comfort. Acne scars affect the majority of acne sufferers, and they are nothing to be embarrassed of. Its just an indication of the bodys normal healing process in response to a wound. And, dont worry, if you want to, you can get rid of acne scars.
It will take some time, but it will be well worth it. Lets see what natural therapies are available to assist you get rid of acne scars.
Quick disclaimer: These home cures are completely safe, non-comedogenic , and effective. Take note of what Im about to say. But first, lets figure out whats causing your scars. Because, as I have said, every solution begins with the cause.
Its Never Too Late To Treat Those Scars
Although its not possible to get rid of your acne scars quickly, its never too late to treat them. Teenage patients may have to wait until their early 20s before undergoing treatment to make sure theres little risk of future acne flare-ups.
While theres no real way to get rid of acne scars naturally and at home, there are a few things you can do to reduce your risk of getting acne scars:
- Quit smoking or dont start smoking.
- Keep your hands off of your face. Resist the urge to pick or squeeze your pimples.
- Treat your acne as soon as possible to reduce the chance of scars.
Scarring can happen at any age, no matter if youre a teenager and your hormones are changing or youre an adult. Sometimes when adults lose weight or lose elasticity in their skin as they age, scarring from years past becomes more evident.
Occasionally, we will actually remove a pitted scar that we know wont heal well with standard treatment using a technique called punch excision, she says. This is where the whole scar and hair follicle are removed prior to resurfacing.
Another treatment that may be helpful before any of the lasers or peels is called subcision, a procedure that involves releasing a scar thats bound to the muscle or deeper tissues so that it can move freely again. Both of these techniques are used with deeper scars to bring them to the surface to enhance their response to the laser, chemical peel or microneedling.
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Book Microdermabrasion With A Professional
In the salon, acne scars and hyperpigmentation benefit from microdermabrasion, Vargas explains. I use a diamond peelthere are diamonds in the tip of the wand that I use. Its adjustable for your skin type, even if you have super sensitive skin. Regular exfoliation is key to getting more even skin tone and even surface. We do something called a Power Peel which is a fruit acid peel/LED light combo that really helps with scars over time.
How Do You Get Rid Of Dark Acne Scars
A retinoid can help to remove pore clogging and dark spots. Some of the acne medications available without a prescription include benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, and retinol. Retinoids, in general, are classified into retinoids of type. Adapalene gel 0.1%, a retinoid that may aid in the correction of retinoids, has been linked to a number of positive outcomes.
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How To Prevent And Treat Acne Scars
Acne can be a frustrating condition to live with. Not only do you have deal with persistent breakouts, but many also face the reality of treating acne scars.
Many of our patients who suffer from acne turn to us and ask what they can do about their acne scarring. While treatment can vary depending on the severity of each patients condition, in this article, well cover the basic steps you can take to prevent and treat acne scars.
What Is Acne Scarring
Acne scars are the result of breakouts caused by skin pores blocked with dead cells, excess oil, and bacteria. Blocking leads to swelling of the pores, which may cause breakage in the follicle wall. This can create deep or shallow lesions that prominently appear on the skin.
Shallow lesions are usually minor and heals faster than the deep ones. Deep breakage in the wall of the pore increases the risk of spilling out the infected material into the surrounding tissues thus creating deeper lesions. Your skin tries to repair these lesions by forming new collagen fibers. However, these repairs arent smooth compared to your original skin.
Did You Know?
Acne scars on the face, back, chest are common. About 80% of people aged between 11-30 years get acne and at least 1 out of those 5 people develop scars.
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