Patients who suffer a very strong acne for several months or even years, are very concerned for the typical spots leaving by this illness.
There are different treatments that can be done in order to enhance the skin after the disease, some are superficial, and other ones deeper and agressive. Often the results take their time to be appreciated, so these treatments need more than a pair of sessions to be effective.
In the following article we are going to talk a little about the reasons why scars appear, what we can do to avoid them and the best solution if we already suffer them.
What kind of spots and scars does the acne leave?
As we said before, the acne usual aesthetical consequenses are spots and scars. There are two kinds of spots: the red ones, produced by the inflammation following the zit that normally disappear in a few months, and the brown and dark ones, dued to post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentatiom, and that are often related with sun exposure.
When we are talking about scars, we can classify them between hypertrophic or cheloid, swollen scars that we can see around the neck or in the back, and atrophic or depressed, that appear for collagen and elastin leak in the middle layer of the skin; these are the commonest ones and we can see them in the cheeks.
What can we do to prevent them?
For a proper treatment of acne spots, the most important thing is prevention, because it will spare us a lot of money and problems in the future. To avoid scars, the first thing is never touch zits. A lot of these spots, specially the pinkish and atropic ones, appear for a bad manipulation of zits, producing secundary wounds and scars. Despite so a huge tentation, we must remember that by touching the zits the damage will be bigger and more anti-aestetical than the zit itself, that only last a few days. It is also very important an early treatment of this sickness with professional attention. Sometimes, we see that people go to the doctor too late, when scars are so many that even with an appropiate treatment it will be impossible not to have any spots.
Finally, once the “active” acne (zits) is over, we need to start a suitable treatment in the first year after scars and spots have shown up, because it is when the skin is more receptive to it. Although we can always get some improvement, the more we leave the scars get old the worst results we will have.
What kind of treatments do we have?
- Topic treatments: there are different creams that can help us healing in the beginning. For instance, the ones with sweetbriar rose or silicone, can improve the results. When scars are depressed and well settled, we can make a retinoid topic treatment to smooth the skin lightly.
- Medical cutaneous treatments: treatments such as hyaluronic acid mesotherapy, micro-puncture mesotherapy or deep peeling, may help to harmonize the skin by reducing quantity and intensity of spots. These methods also stimulate collagene production in the dermis, producing a rennovation of the superficial layer, the epidermis, and enhancing global appearence of the treated area.
- Laser treatments: both ablative (CO2) and non ablative lasers (erbium), lead to a good result with collagene production in superficial and middle dermis, improving the deepest scars when the previously treatment cannot do anything. The best thing with ablative lasers is the improvement of skin surface with a few sessions, but the problem is that it is a very intrusive treatment, that often requires time off sick for at least one week; patient will also need special cares to avoid consequences. No ablative lasers are very safe procedures with a minimum discomfort during treatment itself as well as in the following days, so patients can go on with their normal life, but we will need between 3 and 6 sessions at least, while results cannot be appreciated until 6 months have passed from the last one.
- Hyaluronic acid treatments: when we are dealing with very deep scars, we can fill them with reticulated hyaluronic acid. This treatment offers good results, but we have to repeat it every year to mantain them.
We insist in reminding that the most important thing is a good prevention, but if we already have scars, although we do not have a rubber, we can trust in these useful treatments, specially when scars are still recent. We will be able to see a better skin look without make-up, a thing that everyone use too much and that withers our skin slowly