Even after acne itself has disappeared many of us are still forced to deal with the lingering presence of scars. Acne scars can be as embarrassing and irritating as the original condition that resulted in them but, fortunately, aesthetic medicine is able to offer a number of fantastic treatments that can leave you free of this common problem.
What Causes Acne Scarring?
All scars are caused by the skin healing itself from an injury. Most acne — a “superficial wound” — heals without leaving behind any marks but when the dermis (one of the inner layers of the skin) has been damaged a scar will always result. This can occur when the infection present within a follicle or pore (the root cause of acne) is able to spill out into the dermis layer, damaging tissue on a non-superficial level.
To repair this damage the skin creates collagen that can lead to raised tissue (keloid or hypertrophic ) scarring. When tissue loss is too great, however, a depressed scar can develop (either an ice pick or boxcar scar) that makes affected skin appear pitted or pockmarked.
How Can I Treat Acne Scarring?
Several options are available to patients that wish to improve their acne scarred skin.
Fraxel resurfacing uses sophisticated laser technology called fractional photothermolysis in order to replace damaged tissue with healthy skin cells that are able to function in repairing and resurfacing the skin. Fractional photothermolysis consists of thousands of extremely fine laser columns that are directed into the tissue of a problem area. These laser columns replace damaged tissue and stimulate the production of new skin cells that are able to perform properly and create healthy, resurfaced skin. Fraxel is incredibly accurate, allowing for fast recovery and reliable results. It’s younger sister, Clear + Brilliant, can also help do the trick.
FotoFacial RF Pro also uses laser systems, incorporating elos technology with intense pulsed light (IPL) and radio frequency (RF) waves. This combination of energy is able to heat the skin without further damaging the exterior and boost the skin’s natural ability to restructure itself. Like Fraxel, FotoFacial RF Pro is accurate and quick to recover from
Medical grade chemical peels are also able to significantly improve the skin of patients with mild to moderate acne scarring. A wide range of peels are currently on the market and your dermatologist or aesthetician can help you to select the most appropriate for your unique needs and skin type.