We always keep telling about why you should NEVER, not under any circumstance pop your pimple. But then, agreeing to someone all the time is a bit difficult thing to do plus, there is a party and then this pimple sits on your face, why not just pop it right away and hide the small scar with makeup instead- the urge is almost impossible to overcome, isn’t it?
Now, you kept giving in to this urge and hence popped your pimples enough and this carelessness led to deep scars on your face as a token of remembrance of the acne that happened. In such a case, getting treated for those scars becomes (or if it still hasn’t then should become) the top most priority. The usual treatments at offer in the market mainly include creams for external applications which are for scars in general and not acne scars in specific. Now, what to do? Is living with those scars and skin bumps the only option left?
Well, not really because there are certain things you can try at home and if they do not work then Kosmoderma is always there for you!
A look at the Do-It-Yourselves!
- Coconut Oil Application: Take a quarter of a teaspoon full of coconut oil into your hands and massage it gradually into the scarred skin. Coconut oil is rich in essential vitamins and fatty acids which will help the skin to recover from the scarring. There is no need to wash off the coconut oil of your face and you can sleep over with the oil on your face but if you feel that it is too heavy for you, then wait for at least 30 minutes before washing it off.
- Honey Application: Make sure you use raw honey and not the processed one that is usually available in the market. The procedure is simple, gently massage the honey into your scarred skin. Some people also advise the use of a concoction of honey and lemon juice. You may try that on a normal skin but in case your skin is sensitive, avoid lemon juice application.
- Cucumber slices: Known for its cooling abilities and astringent properties, cucumber is the safest of all home remedies for any skin type. All you need to do is, cut the cucumber into slices, put them in the freezer for some 15 minutes, take them out and then put on your scarred skin for about 20-25 minutes. After that, discard the slices and wash your face with cool water.
The remedies that we just suggested yield results but most of the times the duration before the results can be finally seen is so long that it does not seem worth it. It is thus a better choice to undertake a procedure for faster results and bundle that up with these home care solutions for better recovery (of course after consulting with the doctor).
Types of Acne Scars
Before delving into how to correct or treat them, let us have a look at the types of scars one can have. The purpose is simple- the more you know your condition, the better you would be able to relate to what the dermatologist is saying.
To give an overview first, acne scars are caused by either the loss of tissue (atrophic) or by excess of tissue (hypertrophic). Based on these two categories, there are four sub-categories of acne scars.
- Ice Pick Scars: These are deep narrow scars giving the look as if something sharp pierced the skin. They usually develop after a cystic infection or deep inflammation which works its way to the surface. An atrophic scar, it is marked by the destruction of the skin tissue leaving a slender column like scar.
- Box Scars: Box scars are usually round depressions with vertical sides. For easier imagination, imagine a hollow hemisphere put over a cylindrical bottle, hollow side up. They are wider than ice pick scars and give a pitted appearance to the skin. Another example of atrophic scars, these are formed when an inflammation destroys the collagen in the skin tissue. The depth of the scar varies in proportion to the tissue destruction.
- Rolling Scars: Rolling scars which appear as wave like undulations on the skin are caused when fibrous bands of tissue develop between the skin and subcutaneous tissue below. The bands in turn pull the epidermis to the deeper structures of the skin.
- Keloid Scars: Type of a hypertrophic scar, this one is formed due to excess collagen production. More common in men as compared to women, they are more commonly found in the torso region.
Also, please note that discoloration of skin is a natural response of the skin to the inflammation caused on account of acne. It usually appears as colored patches ranging from pink to red, brown or black depending upon the skin tone and depth of discoloration. In many cases, this discoloration usually fades with time however, in some cases the extra melanin deposition which is usually the cause behind this discoloration has to be treated for removal
Acne Scar Treatment at Kosmoderma
Unlike what the popular opinion is that acne scars can be treated only by Laser, there are several other Non Laser treatments too. Though the principle remains more or less the same- creating wounds to fasten the skin’s healing ability, yet the method by which these wounds or abrasions get created differs.
We will first have a look at some of these Non-Laser treatments before finally venturing into the domain of Lasers
- Peels: Peels are usually the easiest way out in case of scar treatment because they are almost painless. Most peels are chemical based and work by creating minor abrasions on the skin which on account of getting healed fast, heal the nearby skin too. The underlying principle is that the abrasions stimulate production of collagen which thus fills up the scar pits. The skin in this case however tends to peel off over time. The number of peels required also depends on the intensity of scars and the sensitivity of your skin.
- Microneedling: Microneedling is a frequently used technique. It works by damaging the skin tissues which starts a cycle of recovery thus producing new collagen which plumps up the skin and removes wrinkles and fine lines to a great extent
- Radiofrequency Treatment: This method utilised Radio frequency waves against the usage of Lasers for breaking the scar tissue. This method involves pulse delivery to deeper skin layers in order to remodel the collagen. Almost no damage is caused to the upper skin layers and hence the downtime is very little if any at all. This process can be used as a standalone or in conjunction with other acne scar treatments.
The inherent principle behind usage of Laser scar removal is the same as the aforementioned. The difference comes in the type of lasers used which then depends on factors such as the depth of the scar, skin type of the patient etc.
By the way, just to let you know, Kosmoderma is the only clinic offering a dedicated and advanced treatment for acne scars with numerous laser option ranging from Erbium Glass, Co2 Fractional, Erbium Pixel, MicroNeedling, Fractional Radiofrequency, RevLite, ClearScar, ClearSkin, ClearLift and LED. The program called Acne Scar Free uses a combination of 2 to 4 Laser devices to treat the scars at different depth ranging from superficial to deep, so that we can treat all types of scars along with growth factor infusions to stimulate the skin to produce healthy new skin
Going into the details of these Lasers may not be of importance right now because what type of Laser would suit you will depend on the intensity of the scars as well as sensitivity of your skin type.
A broader categorisation of Lasers can be done basis the level of abrasion that is done.
- Ablative lasers such as CO2 and Erbium are more invasive and work by vaporising the outer layer of the skin. This process results in the skin getting in a default healing mechanism leading to increased collagen production. Also, as compared to CO2 lasers. Erbium YAG has more affinity for water which makes the results thus obtained better.
- For Non-ablative lasers such as Fraxel the invasion is far less and the laser works by heating up the targeted tissue without actually destroying it. This stimulates the body’s collagen production to fill in the unwanted fine lines or wrinkles.
This was pretty much on a generic overview note. Another reason why we do not want to give you additional details on purpose is that sometimes, someone might end up making decisions just because they read about a certain laser somewhere which should clearly not be the case considering it is a LASER and your SKIN which should definitely not be risked with.
We strictly maintain that you should discuss all the pros and cons of a particular Laser type with your dermatologist first and then make an informed decision.
**(It is important to note that not every treatment can be used for any of the scar type. It varies with the depth of the scar, the area over which it is spread, the type of scar that it is (pigmentation, ice pick, keloid etc) and several other factors which relate to the skin type.
For example, if someone has deep pigmentation then Laser is the more reliable of the options. However, the type of Laser, the intensity of the Laser light, all these things would depend on the extent of the condition and the person’s skin type in general. Similarly, for scars like ice pick which are not very deep, Fraxel laser could be used since a local application would be enough however in case of box scars, ablative lasers would be more effective.)