It can be very frustrating having to deal with acne breakout and even more frustrating when they leave scars behind on the face and areas of the body they breakout. However, the scars are treatable, as there are medical treatments as well as home remedies that can help get rid of the scars.
CLASSIFICATION/TYPES OF ACNE SCARS
ATROPHIC OR DEPRESSED SCARS
Atrophic scar is an indented scar that heals below the normal layer of skin tissue. The scar is formed when the skin is unable to regenerate tissue. As a result, it leaves an unbalanced scar. They are most common on the face. Atrophic scars are formed when there is not enough collagen when the wound is healing. Atrophic scars are of three(3) types:
These are wide u-shaped scars with sharp edges. They can be shallow or deep. The shallower they are, the better their response to skin resurfacing treatment.
The ice pick scar is a narrow V-shaped scar that can penetrate deep into the skin. They can look like small round or oval holes, like chickenpox scars. These are the most difficult scars to treat because they can extend very far under the surface of the skin.
These are wide depressions that typically have rounded edges and an irregular rolling appearance.
HYPERTROPHIC OR RAISED SCARS
These scars are the most common chest and back acne. They stand on top of the surface of the surrounding skin and are caused by too much collagen during the healing process.
The discoloration left after pimples are removed is not a scar. Traces of purple, red or Brown will disappear on their own after a few months.
TREATMENT OF ACNE SCARS: HOME REMEDIES/ MEDICAL TREATMENT
Various remedies are available over the counter, many of which can help people manage their acne and reduce the appearance of scars.
Topical retinoid are another acne treatment with scar smoothing benefits. In addition to speeding up cell regeneration and improving skin texture, retinoid can also help reduce discoloration and make scars less noticeable.
However, they can also make your skin particularly sensitive to the sun. When using anything that contains retinoic acid, be sure to apply sunscreen every day.
You can find creams and serums with retinoic acid over the counter, but your healthcare provider can also prescribe a higher concentration of ointments for you. Look for products that list retinol as one of the active ingredients.
Lactic acid can act as a gentle peel to pull away dead skin cells. It may help reduce the appearance of scars and smooth the overall texture of the skin.
Lactic acid can also help reduce dark scar tissue, although it can sometimes lead to hyperpigmentation. Because of this possible adverse effect, it is best to test products containing a small piece of lactic acid on the skin before using them to treat acne scars.
Many products for acne contain lactic acid. It is also present in diluted apple cider vinegar, which makes for a more natural and cost-effective treatment.
Salicylic acid is a naturally occurring compound that is often an ingredient in acne skin care products. Salicylic acid helps to remove dirt, skin cells and other debris from the pores of the skin that cause acne.
It also helps to reduce swelling and redness in the area, which may reduce the appearance of scars.
Salicylic acid is beneficial for all scar types. It makes a nice addition to the daily skin care routine for most people who live with acne.
People with sensitive skin may need to test products containing this acid on small areas of skin before using it throughout the face, as it can cause dryness or irritation.
ALPHA HYDROXY ACIDS(AHAs):
Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs)are often found in products made to treat acne because they help remove dead skin and prevent clogged pores. Even better, AHAs can also help make acne scars appear less noticeable.
Several medications can help reduce acne scars. Dermatologists may recommend different procedures, depending on a person’s skin type and the degree of scarring.
Treatment for acne scars include:
Corticosteroid injections may help treat raised acne scar tissue if a person has hypertrophic or keloid scars.
Treatment usually consists of a series of injections. Dermatologists can perform these injections in their office every few weeks, monitoring the results.
Laser treatment resurfaces the skin without the use of chemicals or scrubs. It removes the top layer of the skin, revealing the young skin cells below, which can help reduce the appearance of scars.
Laser treatment is not for everyone, however, because its success depends mainly on the acne scars that a person has and their skin type. Treatment may also cause reactions in some people, especially those with sensitive skin.
These are not the kind of masks you binge to see your Favorite Guilty Pleasure. Chemical Peel is a strong acid that is used to remove the top layer of the skin to reduce deeper scars.
Some chemical peels are gentle enough to be used at home, but your healthcare provider can provide a more powerful solution with more significant results.
There are many different types of chemical peels, so it’s best to talk to your healthcare provider about which one is best for you.
Health care providers use fillers to fill acne scars and help even out of the skin. Fillers can be made with collagen, your own fat, or commercial fillers. They are injected under the surface of the skin to help plump up and smooth out recessed scars.
Most fillers last 6 to 18 months before they need to be redone, but some are permanent.
Acne scars can be an unnecessary reminder of acne and may reduce self-esteem in some people, but they don’t have to be permanent.
Many people are successful in using one or more home remedies. In the case of stubborn scars, receiving medical treatment at the dermatologist’s office can also help get rid of acne scars.