Technology has advanced acne scar removal treatments quite a bit over the past few decades. Scars resulting from blemishes are no longer something one has to deal with.
These kinds of scars can take over large parts of the face, chest, back, or shoulders. They alter the texture of the skin, which makes them impossible to cover up. Options to deal with them used to be few and far between, but this is no longer the case. Here’s a look at the history of acne scar removal. It’s amazing how far we’ve come.
When skin grafting first came about, it quickly became the go-to answer for practically everything skin-related. From scars to tattoos, everything was treated with grafting. This procedure is done by removing a piece of the skin, typically from behind the ear or another place that’s minimally visible, and using it to cover a scarred area. It’s still performed today, typically on acne scars that leave large divots or indentations in the skin, but results vary drastically. Those whose scars are small and stand-alone will often see good results, but those with many acne scars hardly saw a difference. Skin grafting can also leave the skin bumpy and unattractive.
Similar to skin grafting, punch excisions are exactly what they sound like. Using a small tool, a doctor punches out a round piece of skin surrounding an acne scar. This technique is often used for pitted scars: ones that create small, deep holes in the skin. After the piece of skin is cut out, it can either be stitched up or covered by a skin graft. Stitching allows several scars to be treated at once, unlike grafting (as there is limited skin that can be used for grafting purposes). Though still employed for medical uses, punch excisions are rarely used to treat acne scars anymore.
Not just for aging skin, chemical peels can be used to treat acne scars as well. This technique works best on shallow scars, as a chemical peel only removes the top layers of skin—not enough to eliminate pitted or indented marks. There are several different levels of chemical peels available, offering a variety of results as well as side effects. The stronger the treatment is, the more peeling and redness you will experience afterward. Once the skin has healed, patients expect to see that their scars are less visible and that their skin tone has evened out a bit. Chemical peels are still a popular treatment for aging and scarring as they’re easy to book at a spa, but this is a somewhat outdated procedure, which doesn’t always provide the best results for those suffering from excessive acne scars.
An extremely deep exfoliation process, dermabrasion uses a rapid-speed brush to remove the top few layers of skin. Similar to chemical peels, this can be performed at various degrees, often depending on how bad your acne scars are and how much downtime you can afford to take. Like some chemical peels, after this kind of treatment, you will likely need to rest for a few days. Dermabrasions are also considered an older form of treatment and get the best results when done on those with shallow scarring.
Laser Acne Scar Removal
The latest technology in acne scar removal is fractional lasers, which not only provide great results but require zero downtime. These lasers work by targeting the damaged skin cells deep within the layers of the skin. As fractional lasers, they can do this without causing harm to the outer layer. Once the laser has targeted a damaged skin cell, it is eliminated, and a microscopic wound is created. The body then works to replace the old skin cell and heal the wound by producing collagen. All acne scars form due to a problem during the healing process that involves either too much or too little production of collagen. Laser acne scar removal gives your body the chance to try the healing process again, leaving you with natural results.
Not only is this option convenient, with treatments taking 20 minutes on average, but it also can be performed right at your local laser clinic by a licensed medical laser technician. You’ll need several treatments before you get the results you’re looking for, but you’ll be able to notice a difference in your skin after just one treatment. Laser acne scar removal, also known as laser skin rejuvenation, not only removes your acne scars but improves skin tone, texture, and collagen production so you’ll be less likely to scar in the future.
When it comes to acne scar removal, fractional lasers are the way to go. Learn more about how these lasers work in this Body Details video: