You Have Acne Scars, Now What?
As if dealing with acne wasn’t bad enough, now you have the scars leftover to still remind you—and everyone else—just how bad your skin was. It is estimated that 95 percent of acne people afflicted with acne will develop one kind of scar or another. You’re willing to do anything to get rid of those acne scars once and for all, but you’re not sure where to start. Surfing the Internet to find a remedy for acne scars can be downright confusing. Let us breakdown your treatment options so you can make an educated decision on how to bid farewell to acne scars forever.
Acne Scars are the Pits
One of the most common acne scars are pitted scars, which are scars that have created actual dents in the skin. The dents are due to scar tissue that has been produced underneath the skin’s tissue. Contrary to what you may have heard, pitted acne scars do not resolve on their own. There are many treatments found at the dermatologist’s office that will address acne scars, but the hands down best treatment for pitted acne scars is the fractional CO2 laser. The Fractional CO2 laser is a resurfacing laser that works by stimulating the production of new collagen to fill up the area on the skin that has become pitted due to acne scarring.
Lasers for Acne Scars are so Worth It
In your research for acne scar treatments, you have most likely come across all sorts of complaints about how expensive and painful laser resurfacing is. While it may not feel like a massage, laser resurfacing really works. And yes, it can be costly, too. But when you compare the cost of paying for a treatment that actually works versus paying for many treatments that do not work, you will be way ahead of the game with the CO2 laser treatment.
The Truth About Microdermabrasion and Chemical Peels
While microdermabrasion and chemical peels have their time and place in every skincare regimen. They will not make significant improvements on deep, pitted acne scars. Microdermabrasion and chemical peels are excellent at helping improve the redness and brown spots leftover from acne, not the indentations. Microdermabrasion removes dead skin cells from the skin’s surface and resurfaces the very superficial layer of the skin. Microdermabrasion, combined with other treatments such as chemical peels, can improve the appearance of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (dark spots) after acne. It is our opinion that microdermabrasion does not affect the deeper layers of the skin where collagen needs to be stimulated to smooth out acne scars. Patients with very shallow scarring may notice improvement, but most patients with pitted acne scars will benefit more from laser resurfacing treatments than from microdermabrasion. The KTP laser is another treatment that will successfully diminish post-inflammatory redness or hyperpigmentation. But when pitted acne scars are the culprits, it’s time to dig deeper with a fractional CO2 laser.
Getting Rid of Acne Scars F.A.ST.
The F.A.S.T. procedure for acne scars targets localized areas of acne scarring, rather than treating the entire face. F.A.S.T. is an acronym for Focal Acne Scar Treatment. Traditional methods of fractional CO2 laser resurfacing for acne scars utilized “medium” strength energy over the entire face. Dr. Schweiger developed F.A.S.T. as a method of treating acne scars with higher energy levels, but having a shorter healing time. The F.A.S.T. procedure uses the “fraction of a fraction” idea; not only is the laser fractionated, but only a fraction of the skin is being treated at a time. Results have been excellent, with most patients seeing between 50-70% improvement of their acne scars with just 3-4 days of downtime.