Home remedies are effective only up to a point in the case of scars. If you want a permanent solution, it’s best to turn to a dermatologist, who can help suggest the best cosmetic procedure for you.
What is a scar?
A scar is the body’s natural way of healing and replacing lost or damaged skin. Any burn, injury or other trauma can result in a scar.
Types of scars:
Depending on the cause, scars are broadly divided into two categories: Acne scars and post-traumatic scars (caused by trauma such as accident, injury, burn etc.).
Depending on the shape and depth, scars are classified into 3 different types:
Box type scars – they have a base and height; ice-pick scars – they are pointy, and rolling scars – they don’t have a clear demarcated border.
Cosmetic procedures for scar Management:
There are various methods for management of scars, which have become very popular and effective with time. Dermatologist, Dr Juvita Rasquinha gives us some insight into them.
A small procedure, microdermabrasion, involves a gentle sandblasting. Dermatologist, Dr Rasquinha explains that, “Most often, aluminium-oxide crystals are used to gently sandblast the skin. It helps remove the top layer of the skin and dead skin cells, leaving behind a more even and smooth textured skin.” Since this procedure doesn’t have a resting period, one can carry on with their lives as usual, immediately after its done. However, sunscreen is a must before stepping out into the sun.
This method won’t heal your scars in one setting, and will require repeated sessions depending on the depth of the scar.
A minor surgical procedure, subcision, also called as subcutaneous incision-less surgery, is an effective methods to treat deep scars and even wrinkles, using a needle.
“In this procedure, an anaesthetic cream is applied on the scarred area at least 45 minutes prior to the treatment. After which, a 5 cc needle is inserted at an angle of 45 degree,” says Dr Rasquinha.
This technique involves breaking the fibrotic strands around or at the base of the scars. The scar’s depression is lifted by the releasing action of the procedure, as well as from connective tissue that forms during the course of normal wound healing. Dr Rasquinha warns that in this case, the complete healing will take around 20 to 25 days. During this time, one experiences swelling in the area of treatment. However, the external swelling and redness subsides in two days.
Dr Rasquinha says that post-treatment care is necessary for proper healing. “Stay away from the sun, do not use hot water on your treated skin and try to stay away from hot temperature, as sweating too must be avoided, for at least two days after the treatment.” For best results, Dr Rasquinha says, “One will need about 3 to 4 sessions,”
Dr Rasquinha recommends this treatment for those with many scars. Like in the case of subcision, anaesthetic cream is applied on the area, followed by moving the dermaroller (a roller with fine needles) on the affected area.
Here, the skin is pierced very lightly (often compared to acupuncture) without causing any damage to the skin. This, triggers nerve-stimulus, promoting regeneration of skin around the area where the puncture occurred.
In cases of severe scarring, Dr Rasquinha advises using both subcision and the dermaroller for effective results.
Laser is a popular method of scar treatment. Dr Rasquinha says “Here, fractional or CO2 lasers are used to reduce appearance of scars.” For effective results, she says, “Multiple sessions will be needed.”
“These are a temporary, but provide an instant result,” says Dr Rasquinha. It is a one-time procedure. But the patient may have to repeat this after a year, as it’s effect diminishes with time.
Tips from the dermatologist:
Dr Rasquinha warns that in case of acne scars, “Prompt acne management should be the first step rather than jumping to scar management. And even if you get a scar it has to be treated with care.”
In case of keloid or hypertrophic scars, caused by injury, she says, “Intralesional steroid injections can be used. Dosage and frequency has to be decided by a dermatologist.”
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