You No Longer Have to Live With Acne Scars

You No Longer Have to Live With Acne Scars

Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States. About 50 million people a year suffer from acne outbreaks. Although we usually think of acne as a teen and adolescent problem, it often persists into adulthood. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, up to 15% of adult women experience acne.

Acne itself has many psychological repercussions. People can suffer from low self-esteem and embarrassment. But after the acne clears up, it’s not time to rejoice yet. Often acne scars take the place of the blemishes. These scars can be equally as damaging to your self-esteem, or worse. One study found that up to 90% of people with acne experience scarring.

How does an acne scar form?

Acne scars generally come from severe acne, often called inflamed acne. All acne is a result of pores, also known as hair follicles, that get clogged with oil, bacteria, and dead skin. When one of the pores fills with too much of these materials, its swells and damages the follicle wall. This damage results in scarring. Minor blemishes don’t generally lead to scarring unless you poke, prod, and squeeze them.

When the acne causes damage to the follicle wall or skin, your body attempts to repair the damage with collagen. Sometimes your body produces too little collagen, and sometimes it produces too much.

When the collagen is not enough, the mark on the skin it creates looks indented or depressed. This type of scar is called atrophic scarring. When the body produces too much collagen, it creates raised scars, also called hypertrophic or keloid scars.

Unfortunately, as you age, your skin loses its elasticity and acne scars become even more noticeable.  

Effective acne scar treatment

Fortunately, there are many treatments you can use to help fade or eliminate acne scars and give your self-esteem a boost. At Danvers Family Doctors, PC, our providers use one of the most effective methods to reduce the appearance of acne scars, the Icon™ laser.

The Icon laser technology uses light pulses to penetrate the skin and stimulate collagen production. By boosting collagen production with Icon, we can help the depressed acne get the collagen it needs to fill out, and the raised scars get collagen buildup around them, smoothing out your skin and improving your appearance.

An Icon treatment only takes several minutes. You may need more than one treatment, depending on the severity of your acne scars. The benefits of Icon are that it’s non-invasive with minimal discomfort and recovery.

How to prevent acne scarring

While it may seem that acne scarring is inevitable, there are steps you can take to minimize your chances of developing scars or to make the scarring less severe. When you get an acne outbreak, be diligent about treating it. The fewer outbreaks you have and the shorter the time you have them, the lower your chances of acne scarring.

Then, when the acne clears up, continue with good skin care practices and follow your acne treatment as directed by your doctor. And, you probably know this, but it bears repeating — never pick, squeeze, or pop your blemish.

If you have acne scars that you’d like to get rid of or want to learn more about scar reduction therapy, call us at Danvers Family Doctors, PC, or make an appointment online.

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