If one is considering undergoing scar acne treatment, it’s important to get the right information. Acne is a condition in which inflammation and infection of the sebaceous glands and ducts results in pimples, blackheads, whiteheads that can lead to scars on the skin surface. It is the most common skin problem, mostly experienced by teenagers and those in early 20’s.
In fact, 85% of teenagers aged 12-24 suffer from acne. And around 25% of them will have permanent scar acne. According to the American Dermatologist Association, 60 million Americans have active acne wherein 20 million have acne that can leave scars.
Statistics show that acne affects people regardless of age, gender or race. While acne is treatable only 10% will seek a physician, 20% will visit a skin care center, 30% will use over-the-counter medication and 40% will do nothing.
Tough acne is not contagious; it is considered a social pain that starts to develop during adolescence. This is the time that oil glands mature. Both boys and girls have a consistently high level of androgen. The temporary increase in androgen stimulates the production of sebaceous glands that ordinarily discharge sebum, an oily fluid through the pores. Overproduction of sebum causes it to turn into paste that clogs skin surface.
Skin pores are tiny and often clogged with dirt. When sebum is accumulated under the skin, it forms a pimple, whitehead or blackhead that particularly appears on the nose, cheeks and shoulders. Moreover, acne is also caused by genetics, hormone, prescribed medications, oil-based cosmetics, physical irritation, humidity, environmental pollutants and stress.
But once acne lesion is healed, it leaves a red mark on the skin. The skin takes about 6-12 months to heal. However, if the mark does not disappear for more than a year, it leaves scar acne.
Understanding Scar Acne
Scar acnes fall into two categories – atrophic and hypertrophic. Atrophic are caused by loss of tissue while hypertrophic is the overabundance of tissue. In addition, scars are divided into four subcategories – Rolling Scars, Ice Pick Scars, Hypertrophic/Keloid Scars, and Boxcar Scars.
Ice pick scar is a common type of acne scarring. The pits are usually less than 2 mm deep giving the surface a punctured-like appearance. Rolling scars, on the other hand, creates a wave-like appearance due to the wide and shallow pit. Boxcar scars are angular, sharp vertical edges that are shallow and deep and appear on the cheeks or temples. The scar resembles a Chicken Pox.
Lastly is hypertrophic, a raised and lumpy scar that stays within the wound but eventually reduces in size. It commonly appears on the neck and face. Keloid scars, a type of hypertrophic scarring, expand beyond the wound site. The scar is firm, rubbery and itchy.
Scar Acne Treatments
Each type of scar has its own causes as well as treatments. To prevent acne from leaving scars, a scar acne treatment is needed. But before undergoing any kind of scar acne treatment, it is essential to be free of active acne, educate yourself and find the proper scar acne treatment.
There are numerous scar acne treatments available in the market. The most popular scar acne treatment is chemical peel. It removes the top layer of the skin that helps regenerate a fresher and smoother layer of skin. Though similar to dermabrasion, chemical peels use chemicals instead of abrasive instruments.
Second is dermabrasion, the first scar acne treatment developed. It removes damaged skin allowing a new layer of skin to regenerate. The skin may feel irritated and turn reddish, but as it heals, the surface becomes smoother. This type of acne scar treatment is suitable for people who have mild acne scars.
Third scar acne treatment is laser treatment. This method is suitable for people who have keloids. It removes the bump by burning away the damaged skin using laser. Studies show that this treatment is very effective.
Fourth scar acne treatment is called collagen treatment. This is suitable for people who have crater marks or scars due to acne. The method is done by injecting collagen under the scarred skin, replacing the body’s natural collagen. Collagen injections are often used after a peeling treatment.
Fifth is autologous fat transfer. This scar acne treatment is suitable for people who suffer crater marks. This is done by getting a fat from another part of the body and using it. This is very expensive and delicate; however, if it goes well it can bring good results.