Types of Acne Scars:
Dealing with acne in itself is hard but treating acne scarring is harder because it leaves a mark that’s almost impossible to erase. Acne scars come in different forms.
Ice pick scars
These are deep narrow pitted scars that make the skin appear as if it has been punctured with an ice pick and are usually best treated with fractional lasers, microneedling or dermabrasion.
These scars are round and look like chickenpox scars. Skin depressions are broader with sharply defined edges. They are treated with fractional or traditional laser resurfacing. Microneedling is now becoming a popular choice because it has shorter downtime than more aggressive lasers like Er:YAG laser.
Like boxscars these has broad depressions with defined sloping edge. They are also treated with fractional or traditional laser resurfacing. Again,microneedling is a good option because it has shorter downtime and lesser chances of side effects like burns and post laser skin pigmentation.
Hypertrophic scars– these are elevated bumps rather than depressed scars. can be itchy and painful, causing serious cosmetic disability .Hypertrophic scar is defined as visible and elevated scars that do not spread into surrounding tissues and that often regress spontaneously. These are usually treated with with intralesional cortecosteroids injection, onion extract and heparin gel or surgery but until now there is no definitive treatment method has not been established.
Topical creams and Chemical Peel– Treatment for acne scars may include retinoic acid, superficial chemical peeling using glycolic acid or Alpha Hydroxyl Acid (AHA) or medium peel like Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) peel.
Laser Resurfacing is commonly used to treat acne scars but this is more painful and has longer downtime .
Microdermabrasion or diamond peel is a very popular procedure for acne scars but this can only treat superficial mild scars and needs several treatments to see skin improvement.
Fillers- Some examples are Juvederm and Restylane.These are injectables that contain Hyaluronic acid to plump skin depression. Some fillers use collagen instead of hyaluronic acid.
Microneedling– This is now becoming a popular choice because it has shorter downtime than more aggressive lasers. This minimally invasive procedure uses a device that contains very fine needles that punctures the skin effectively enough to stimulate collagen and elastin production. The microchannel produced will also aid in the penetration and absorption of therapeutic serum. Micro needling system improves the skin texture , increases skin thickness. reduces pore size.
How to reduce scarring
Like all other diseases prevention is the best treatment. If you develop acne it’s best to consult your dermatologist to know what is the best skin care is for you. There are many over the counter acne medications but some may even aggravate your acne leading to a more severe condition and scarring.
Gloria Octaviano is a Physician-Dermatoogist in the Philippines, she is a member of the International Society of Dermatology and Philippine Academy of Clinical and Cosmetic Dermatology. She is the founding partner of Melanin Aesthetics and Laser Clinic, Gloria is the clinical researcher and training officer of Nubody Equipment Ltd. Canada. Her office, Melanin Aesthetics and Laser Clinic is located at 10342 Whalley Blvd, Surrey BC. Phone #: 604- 496-5114