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Acne Vulgaris, commonly known as acne is a type of chronic skin condition which occurs when the hair follicles of the skin become clogged with oil and dead skin cells. Characterized by blackheads, pimples, whiteheads and greasy skin, acne can also cause scarring. Typically, acne which causes pimples tends to develop on the back, chest, shoulders but mostly on the face and neck.
Causes and symptoms of pimple scars:
Although the actual cause of acne is uncertain, medical professionals have reason to believe that an increase in the level of androgen triggers pimples. On the other hand, scarring due to pimples are a result of the presence of inflamed lesions. Such inflamed lesions when gorged with surplus oil, bacteria and dead skin cells, cause swelling and an eventual rupture in the follicle wall which leads to scarring. The extent of the scar has a direct relationship with the rupture. That is to say, the deeper the rupture, the bigger the scar.
In actuality, the formation of scars is involved in the normal healing process of the skin. The skin cells in order to mend the damage caused by the ruptured pimples, forms fresh collagen fibers which are fibrous proteins that impart flexibility and strength to the skin. The resultant repair which are very rarely smooth and unblemished are referred to as scars.
Treatment of pimple scars:
- Fractional Radiofrequency treatment is a highly effective method of reducing or removing pimple scars from skin. The radio frequency does not cause much damage to upper layers of skin, but effectively breaks down the scar tissue.
- Lasers are alternative and are little less painful. This treatment involves the use of skin resurfacing lasers.
- Fillers are another form of treatment which fill the indentations left remaining from dense pimple scars. Hardly any down time with this but are expensive in the long run.
- Scar reduction surgery is meant to minimize the scar so that it is more consistent with your surrounding skin tone and texture.
Treatment of active acne:
How Chemical Peels Heal Acne-Prone Skin
Chemical peels lift dead-skin off the surface of the skin. This makes room for more skin cells to migrate upward to the surface of the skin from the basal layers below. These younger skin cells have more natural skin tones than the dead skin cells they replace. They are smaller, so the skin is not as tight. This gives pores more room to drain so they don’t clog with dead skin cells and sebum. And the act of using a chemical peel on the skin stimulates the production of collagen beneath the skin. This fills in pitted scars and makes the skin both strong and flexible.
Antibiotics for Acne Treatment
Antibiotics are more effective for inflammatory acne, than for non-inflammatory, because they have no effect on unplugging blocked pores, which are blackheads and whiteheads. Antibiotics can be taken orally or applied to the skin in the form of creams, gels and lotions.
For mild to severe acne, a doctor might recommend prescription treatments that are "topical," which means they go on your skin. These treatments might also be used for more severe acne in combination with other medicines.
Topical treatments for teenage acne come in different forms, including creams, lotions, gels and pads. Some types include:
- Topical antibiotics. These acne medicines can kill some of the bacteria on the skin and reduce redness and inflammation. Examples of antibiotics include clindamycin and erythromycin.
- Topical retinoids. Retinoid creams are made from vitamin A. They work by unplugging the follicles, which also allows other medicines like topical antibiotics to work better. Examples include Avita, Differin, Retin-A, and Tazorac.
- Other topical medicines. Some of the medicines that you can find over the counter are available in more potent forms by prescription. These include azelaic acid, benzoyl peroxide, dapsone, and sulfur-based treatments. They help by reducing swelling and blocking the growth of bacteria.
For moderate to severe cases, a cosmotologist might recommend prescription acne medications taken by mouth instead of -- or in addition to -- topical treatments. Here are some of the types used.
- Oral antibiotics. For more severe teen acne, daily antibiotics can help kill bacteria and reduce swelling. These drugs are typically prescribed for periods of six months or less. Over time, the bacteria may become resistant to a specific antibiotic. When that happens, the doctor may switch to a different drug.
- Isotretinoin. This is a powerful drug in the retinoid group. It's used for severe or moderate acne that can’t be controlled with other treatments. It reduces the amount of oil made by glands in the skin. It also curbs inflammation and reduces clogged hair follicles. Taking it for several months, once or twice a day, can clear most cases of acne.
Treatment of Acne Scars:
Fractional Carbon Dioxide (CO2)
Fractional or “pixilated” carbon dioxide (CO2) lasers are one of the latest advances in non-surgical skin rejuvenation treatments. The CO2 laser has the longest wavelength of all the lasers on the market and can be used safely on darker skin types with appropriate adjustments in the settings.
Fractional CO2 lasers excel at treating deeper wrinkles, more severe textural changes from sun damage, wrinkles, blotchiness, acne scars, and surgical or traumatic scars. It can be used on the delicate eyelid skin and around the mouth. It is also a very effective treatment for sun damage and precancerous growths (actinic keratoses – note that insurance will not cover this).
How does this laser work for acne scars and other scars?
CO2 lasers have always been very effective for acne and other scars and the fractional CO2 is no exception. It remains to be seen if it is as effective as the traditional CO2. However, as the settings for the “DOT” or “Deep Fx” for both acne, surgical and traumatic scars keep being improved, many of us think that results will be as good without many of the risks with the older forms of this laser. Go to an expert if scars are your issue.
Dermaroller for removing acne scars
Derma Roller therapy is clinically proven to be effective in reducing acne scars.
Derma Roller (or dermaroller) treatment for acne and acne scars is a type of Microneedling treatment that is creating waves in the cosmetological field. Not only has it been proven to work on acne scar tissue; it can also improve overall skin tone and texture.
The Bottom Line
In the end, it’s important to remember that just because over-the-counter acne treatments haven’t worked for you, it’s not the end of the line as far as finding a skincare solution. A good cosmetologist should be able to work with you to come up with a routine that works best for you. Keep in mind that sometimes it can take a few tries to find the solution that does the trick for you; but don’t lose hope! Clear skin can be had even if you have reached a point where you just don’t believe it’s possible.
If you wish to discuss any specific skin problem, you can consult a specialized cosmetologist and ask a free question.