Acne Scarring: the Most Common Causes and Effective Treatments

acne scarsIt’s incredibly frustrating when you finally get rid of a zit and it leaves behind a scar. Once a scar is there, it only goes away with proper treatment. Learning the types of acne that most commonly lead to scarring can help you appropriately treat the blemishes before they cause scarring. If you have existing scarring, there are treatment options available to help reduce or eliminate them.


Are You Predisposed to Acne Scars?

Cystic acne is the most common type of acne that leads to scarring. Most cystic zits end up leaving a scar behind after it disappears. People who start getting acne as a preteen are more likely to develop severe acne by the time they’re teenagers.  It’s incredibly important to get acne treatment in preteens to prevent severe, scarring acne. Patients with relatives who have acne scars are more likely to develop scarring because of genetics.


acne stages


Treatment of Acne Scars

Scars can’t be treated effectively at home. No matter how severe your scarring is, it’s best treated by a professional. But how does the treatment vary depending on the type of scarring present?

dermal_fillersDermal fillers are becoming popular because they’re non-invasive and you see immediate improvement. Your doctor will inject a dermal gel (usually made of hyaluronic acid) into the depressed or pitted scar, filling in the depression. The skin will start to form collagen around the scar, gradually filling it in naturally. Some fillers are permanent but results typically last about 12 to 18 months before the scar needs to be retreated.

For very noticeable, almost traumatic scarring, there is an acne scar surgery. Your dermatologist lifts the scar, bringing it closer to the surface of the skin so it becomes less noticeable. Another type of surgery will break up the scar tissue so the body absorbs it and the scar’s visibility decreases significantly.

Resurfacing is less invasive than surgery, and these procedures work well to treat widespread scarring. A resurfacing procedure basically removes the top layers of skin, forcing the body to create new, undamaged skin cells. It also works to treat uneven pigmentation. The kind of resurfacing procedure you get will depend on the severity of your scarring and the health of your skin. Chemical peels, dermabrasion, microdermabrasion, and laser skin resurfacing are the most effective procedures for acne scarring. Resurfacing works best for scars that are flat and not too deep, so it isn’t going to be an effective option if you have deep ice-pick scars. The resurfacing contours the edges of the scars to make them less noticeable, but extremely deep scars are best reduced with a combination of surgery and resurfacing.


Preventing Acne Scars

do not squeezePrevention is always the best cure, so follow some of these tips to prevent scarring from occurring:

  • – Don’t pop or squeeze zits.
  • – Continue treating acne even after the blemishes have disappeared.
  • – Be kind to your skin by using a gentle cleanser and cleansing techniques.

Acne that leads to scars is best treated by a doctor. Improper treatment exacerbates acne and greatly increases your chances of developing a pesky scar, but existing scars can still be treated, so talk to your doctor if you’ve been battling acne scars since puberty.


acne reasons