What is acne scarring?
Severe acne can be devastating for the sufferer. Although many people experience the skin condition during adolescence, acne statistics show that there is a rise in adult acne. The inflamed blemishes often leave behind noticeable scarring that can have a detrimental impact on self-esteem and self-confidence.
What causes acne scarring?
Acne scars are formed when a breakout deeply penetrates the skin, damaging the tissues beneath the surface. Acne scarring that is visible on the face, or on the body, can be caused by any type of acne related spot, pimple or lesion. Where the skin tissue has been damaged, the body needs to produce collagen to help heal and mend the affected area. Part of the healing process involves the damaged skin becoming red and raised. When the healing is complete, a smooth and pale scar will be visible.
Not all scarring is the same, and scar tissue can often be unsightly. Atrophic (pitted) acne scars most commonly appear on the face. The scars have a sunken, depressed appearance and are formed by a lack of collagen in the damaged area, during the healing process. Atrophic acne scars can be shallow or deep with sharp edges (boxcar scar), have a narrow V shape (ice pick scar) or irregular rounded depressions (rolling scar). Raised hypertrophic acne scars are the result of too much collagen, and are usually evident on the chest and upper back. Purple, red or brown discolouration can also be present.
Microdermabrasion can help to reduce the scarring caused by shallow boxcar or rolling scars that appear close to the skin’s surface. Micro-needling is an effective treatment for reducing the depth of depressed and pitted acne scars. Dermal fillers can also be used to fill in, plump up and even out the skin. Multiple treatment sessions will be required for severe scarring.