Monthly Archives: July 2012

Acne Scar Treatments

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There are many ways to treat acne scars. Determining your treatment depends on the type of scar and quantity of scarring. Before you consider a scar treatment you should have an in depth conversation with your doctor. It is very important you only use this information as an introduction to scar treatments and not a final guide. Your dermatologist and you can discuss the proper treatment after you have basic knowledge.

For very mild acne, a chemical peel might be all that you need. Different types of acid are used in this procedure. It is recommended that you choose another method of treatment, if you have very noticeable or deep scarring. The chemical peel procedure takes about fifteen minutes. The resultant facial redness may last up to a few weeks.

There are a few choices available to treat moderate acne scarring. The most popular are dermabrasion and laser resurfacing. Dermabrasion is a scar treatment in which a diamond plated wheel is used to “sand” your face. This technique has been around for a long time and sandpaper was once used instead of the new machines that utilize the diamond plated tool. Generally, this procedure takes around an hour to perform. You should expect some scabbing and redness for a few weeks. This method is most effective for individual with very pale or very dark complexions.

The other treatment for mild acne scars is laser resurfacing. This treatment involves removing old skin with a carbon dioxide (CO2) or erbium laser. Depending on the size and frequency of the scars, the treatment may last only several minutes or in excess of an hour. This treatment is not advised for people with darker skin pigment, because it may result in uneven skin color. After treatment, redness should be expected for a few weeks and a mild pinkish tone may be evident even longer.

For very deep, pitted scars, physicians utilize a “punch technique.” There are several “punch” treatments available depending on your doctor, type of acne and other factors. The first type is a punch replacement in which a tool is used to remove the scar. Then a skin graft from another part of your body is transplanted over the site. Another technique is the punch excision where the scar is surgically removed and the area allowed to recover. Finally, there is a technique where the physician removes the scar at the bottom. The skin at the treated area is allowed to rise and fills the cratered area. Usually a punch technique is combined with dermabrasion or laser resurfacing for optimal results. Healing may take up to several weeks.

Another type of acne scar treatment is subcision. With subcision the scar is detached from the lower tissue, which allows a blood clot to form under the skin. The clot forces the scar up to the surface of the skin. Similar to the punch techniques, combining subcision with dermabrasion or laser resurfacing yields the best results. This type of treatment can be effective for all types of scarring, but is best for deeper and more prominent scars.

The last type of treatment is augmentation. Augmentation uses a material similar to collagen which is injected under the skin to bring the scar to the surface. Recovery is immediate and no time off work is necessary. The drawback, however, is that results are temporary and only last up to six months.

Whatever acne scar treatment you decide upon, keep in mind that some may require more than one session with a doctor. Always consult your dermatologist to decide which treatment is best for you. There is a wide variation with the costs associated with the various treatments. Make sure you consider the financial ramifications with your treatment plan before you proceed. Remember, more than one treatment plan may be effective in your particular situation. Each plan has benefits and drawbacks so make sure you discuss all your concerns with your doctor.

July 31, 2012

Acne Scar Treatment Techniques

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Acne is one of the most common and bothersome skin conditions for adolescence. Although acne itself is not curable, even the most severe cases can be treated effectively. For these sever conditions, various types of acne scar treatment are available if warranted by the situation.

Recent estimates indicate that 85% of the population between the ages of 12 and 24 suffer from acne. The severity and amount of time a person has acne can vary from person to person, but for most of us, it will eventually go away by itself. It is true that even mild acne may affect normal social activities because of the undesirable changes to your appearance, but this is considered more of a nuisance than anything else.

Unfortunately, there are more severe forms of acne with greater consequences. In addition to being painful, sever cases of acne can cause serious scarring. Acne scars can occur in both mild acne or severe acne, but the chances of scarring increases as the acne severity increases. Luckily, you have the option of choosing between several acne scar treatment techniques available.

The purpose of acne scar treatment is to restore your skin to its original appearance. You will find, however, that restoration is not always 100%, but acne scar treatment works to make the scarring almost invisible. There are a variety of techniques available to remove acne scars and each one uses a different approach. It is recommended that you consult with a dermatologist to determine the best technique based on your type of acne and the severity of scarring present.

At this point, you may be asking yourself how acne scars occur. In general, acne scars, and other types of scars for that matter, result from tissue damage. After tissue is damaged, the body will begin healing itself and in the process discourages any chance of infection. Your body sends a special chemical call collagen to the affected area. Sometimes, the collagen is produced in excess and develops into an irregularly shaped fibrous mass resulting in an acne scar.

Other types of scars that may also occur include soft scars, depressed scars, “ice-pick” scars, atrophic macules, and many others. For the most part, these types of scars are caused by the loss of tissue from a particular area.

Injecting collagen under the surface of the scarred skin is one of the most popular acne scar treatment techniques being used. The purpose of this technique is to puff out or restore the skin, which makes the scar much less noticeable. Another acne scar treatment technique is called autologus fat transfer. This process uses the fat from one part of your body for injection into the affected area. This helps to fill in the scar, but since fat is eventually absorbed into the body, repeated applications may be needed.

Other effective acne scar treatments include laser or dermabrasion. Skin grafting and even surgery is a possibility, but these procedures are used only used in the most extreme cases. Hopefully, you will not have to undergo any of these techniques to address your acne, but if scarring is present, with the help of your dermatologist you will be able to make an effective choice.

July 31, 2012

Acne Scar Treatment

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Acne scars develop after severe cases or when the acne has been forcibly picked or scratched. There are many types of acne scars, each entirely treatable.

The only sure method of acne scar treatment is prevention early on. In general, you should never pick or squeeze acne, especially inflammatory acne or “pustules”. Squeezing forces infected material deeper into the skin, causing additional inflammation and possible scarring.

But there are many acne scar treatment options. All acne scar treatments are short procedures fifteen minutes to an hour but recovery times vary from fifteen minutes to many months. Scabbing, redness, swelling, flakiness, dryness, bruising and uneven skin tone are common post-treatment effects. Acne scar treatment can cost anywhere from $50 to over $3000. Ask a dermatologist which type of acne scar treatment is right for you.

Dermabrasion works on shallow acne scars. For decades, sandpaper was used to scrape away damaged skin, allowing new skin to grow in its place, but now machines with rotating diamond edged wheels are used.

Laser resurfacing is a newer resurfacing technique, with the same effects as dermabrasion. Penetration depth into the skin is more easily controlled with a laser than with dermabrasion and other methods.

Chemical peels are designed only for the lightest of cases. It involves application of different types of acid to the skin in order to remove the top layer so that a smoother layer can surface.

Punch techniques are used for deep acne scars. Punch replacement or excision involves removing the pitted scar, followed by a skin graft or suture. Punch elevation, on the other hand, just cuts the scar loose and allows it to float up to the level of surrounding skin.

Subcision is a method whereby the scar tissue is broken up underneath the surface of the skin, forming a pool of blood under the scar. The blood clot helps form connective tissue under the scar, leveling it with the surface.

Dermal fillers are used for deeper acne scars. Material – often collagen or fat is injected under the scar to bring it to surface level. Injections usually last about six months, although research into the longer lasting materials continues to this day.

July 30, 2012

Acne Scar Solutions

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Acne is a common skin infection that affects over 80% of youth and 5% of adults. When acne eventually heals, it leaves ugly blemishes called acne scars. These become permanent if they are not treated in time. Acne scars are damaging to the ego and personality of an individual, and a lot of time and money has been invested in research to treat this problem.

Acne scars are classified by size, shape and appearance they are identified as Icepick, Boxcar and Rolling. They are also tagged as early or permanent on the basis of their duration. Early scars respond well to topical medications. Permanent scars require surgical intervention. Presently, scars are treated with combinations of topical skin care medications in tandem with carefully selected surgical and skin resurfacing procedures.

At least a half dozen surgical procedures are also performed to repair acne scars. Each has benefits and pitfalls and a surgeon will closely examine the patient’s age, sex, medical history, skin type and type of scarring before agreeing to perform surgery. Cost is also discussed, as it can be quite expensive.

When dermal fillers are used, a surgeon will inject fillers such as collagen and hyaluronic acid derivatives into the skin. This raises the base of the scar to the level of normal skin. The “punch excision” procedure is used in

icepick and boxcar type scars and relies on making incisions in the skin with a punch biopsy tool and stitching the skin edges together. The new scar heals, leaving a clear skin. Punch excision with skin graft replacement is a variant of the punch excision method. Instead of suturing the skin after excision, surgeons use a skin graft to repair the scar. Punch elevation is used on deep boxcar scars that have sharp edges and normal appearing bases. Here the base of the scar is excised and elevated to the surface of the skin. Sutures and glue are used to join the edges together. Subcutaneous Incision is used for treating rolling scars and centers on the use of a special beveled needle that is inserted under the skin and used to cut the binding tissue in the scar. The resulting bruises fade after about 1 week. Laser resurfacing is used to burn the top layer of the skin and reduce it to the same level as the base of the scars.

Prevention is always better than cure. Simple precautions such as avoiding strong sunlight, using medications like tretinoin and alpha hydroxyl acids, avoiding picking scabs, regular exercising and dietary control go a long way in preventing acne scars and saving a lot of embarrassment and expenses.

July 29, 2012

Acne Scar Removal Tips

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While acne does affect about 90% of adolescents, only a small majority of those affected are left with scars. However, those who are left with scars often look for acne scar removal methods that work to remove or diminish the scars. Fortunately, there are many options available for acne scar removal.

Acne scar removal can be by dermabrasion. This is a process where the top layers of the skin are removed with the use of a machine that literally abrades the skin. While dermabrasion does give your skin a smoother appearance, it is not 100% effective for acne scar removal.

Chemical peels are another option for acne scar removal. This works much the same as dermabrasion, but instead of machinery, chemicals are used to remove the top layer of skin. Again, this is not 100% effective for acne scar removal, but it does give the skin a smoother appearance.

Another technique for acne scar removal is collagen injections. Collagen injections are often used to treat wrinkles, scars, and lines. Injections can be expensive, and will need to be repeated on a regular basis. This is another acne scar removal technique that doesn’t actually remove the scars. It really just hides them.

A drastic acne scar removal procedure is Autologous Fat Transfer. This is a process where fat is removed from other parts of your body, and injected back into your skin. It doesn’t remove scars. Instead, it fills up depressions, such as those that are characteristic of acne scars. Again, this is a drastic acne scar removal method, and the process will need to be repeated as the fat is absorbed into the body.

Another drastic acne scar removal technique is punch grafts. This is a process where small skin grafts are taken and used to replace scarred skin. This acne scar removal technique is usually used to remove deep acne scars.

The newest – and seemingly most effective – acne scar removal technique is Laser Skin Resurfacing. This is a process where the acne scarred skin is gently vaporized, with the use of a laser. Once the damaged skin is vaporized, the new – unscarred – skin underneath is visible. Local anesthesia is given for small areas, but for full face acne scar removal, the person is usually sedated with anesthesia administered through an I.V by an anesthesiologist.

July 28, 2012

Acne Scar Removal: How To Do It The Right Way?

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Acne scar removal is effective when done properly, with the right products.

For many individuals, acne scar removal is the best solution to having scars removed from their body. Many individuals spend years dealing with acne in one form or the next. They find that there are many products on the market that do little to actually help them to remove acne. Acne scars can be devastating to their self esteem and outward appearance. Many individuals will deal with confidence issues because of their scars. Yet, acne scar removal can be the exact answer to their needs.

How Do They Work?

Selecting the right product for acne scar removal is important in the process. What individuals need to know is how the product actually works. For some situations, the product will work by exfoliating the skin enough to create new skin growth in the area of the scar. When the new skin heals, the scar will be gone or much less noticeable. These exfoliating products work well for many. Often, this acne scar treatment is called a chemical peel.

There are both natural and chemical forms of this type of acne scar treatment. Many of them work in the same method with the goal of removing the top layers of skin to help improve the skin’s condition. Other products work by gently and effectively removing the scar through topical treatments. In any case, the method for which the acne treatment works should provide some results rather quickly.

How To Select The Appropriate One

When selecting an acne scar removal product, insure that you understand how the product works. Find out how it will work to remove the scars on your body. Also, insure that you are not allergic to anything in the product. If you are unsure, test the product on a small area of skin to see if there is a reaction within a day’s time. Also, you should notice where the removal treatment is used. Some are not meant for the face while others will not be able to be used on the neck or body.

Acne scar removal can actually help to reform the skin and the soul when it is selected wisely.

July 27, 2012

Acne’s Top 10 FAQ’s

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1.) Can you get (catch) acne from other people?

Answer: While certain types of acne do contain a bacterium, it is located in the hair follicles under your skin and can not be transmitted through contact. So no, touching or kissing someone with acne will not cause you to develop acne.

2.) If both my parents had acne does that mean I will develop acne?

Answer: Studies show that heredity does play an important role in determining who develops acne. So children of parents who had or have acne are at a grater risk then others. It should be noted that as with any disease just because you have a family history, does not guarantee you will get it; only that you have a much great chance then someone with no family history.

3.) Does eating or drinking certain foods cause acne?

Answer: Over the years studies have suggested everything from chocolate, candy, fried foods, sugar, drinking water, orange juice to milk can cause you to develop acne or make existing acne worse. However their is no scientific evidence to support any such results. There are so many factors effecting acne development that it is very difficult to isolate any one cause. So whether or not to avoid certain foods or drinks is really just an individual preference. If you find your skin reacts negatively to certain foods, then just don’t eat or drink it.

4.) Does dirt on my skin cause acne?

Answer: Having proper hygiene will help with healthy skin. However dirty skin will not cause acne, but anybody with acne should be extra vigilant in having a good cleansing routine. Over washing can irritate your skin and make it more vulnerable to infection. Washing with a gentle cleanser will help reduce skin cell build up and keep your skin looking at its best. So find a balance and try not to over wash.

5.) Does stress cause acne?

Answer: Stress has been shown to make acne worse, not directly cause it. So if you suffer from acne you should be aware of how you react under stress and develop ways to help manage and keep it under control. This will not only help with controlling your acne but also benefit your over all health.

6.) Can you develop acne once you are out of your teens?

Answer: The simple answer is yes. In fact many people who never experienced acne as a teen can develop it in their 30, 40, and 50’s.

7.) Does make up or sunscreen make acne worse?

Answer: Certain products that are overly greasy and thick can plug the skins follicles leading to the development of acne. Not all products affect everyone the same way, so while you many develop acne using one product someone else may not. If you are prone to acne you will need to be extra careful with what you put on your skin. Try to always use oil free products and also test a small amount on a patch of skin for a few days before using it all over.

8.) Will exercising affect my acne?

Answer: While it is still unclear why this happens, vigorous exercising that causes your body to heat up and sweat does seem to cause acne to get worse for certain people. One theory is that exercise increases the production of sebum, the oil that when to much is produced can lead to acne.

9.) Can a facial help with acne?

Answer: There is no easy way to answer this question. The term facial is used to describe everything from an over the counter product you buy from a drug store and do it yourself to something done at an expensive spa for hundreds of dollars. The bottom line is anything that might irritate your skin can make your acne worse.

10.) Why does my acne stop responding to my current treatment?

Answer: Acne medication, like all medications can become less effective over time as your body builds a resistance to them. It might be necessary to use acne treatment regiments on a rotational basis for optimum effectiveness.

July 26, 2012