There are many treatments for scars, among them laser, which can be a popular method that satisfies many patients. If you’re wondering whether or not laser treatment is an option for you, here’s a guide to the types of scars that respond well and can be treated by lasers.
Your body has lots of built-in mechanisms for healing itself. Unfortunately, sometimes it gets a little carried away. When traumas like surgery, body piercings, vaccinations, or blisters injure the skin, the body can sometimes heal a little too aggressively, producing an excess amount of collagen to close up the site of injury. When this happens, a keloid scar can form. Keloids are firm, raised scars that appear red or purplish in color.
Another type of raised scar is hypertrophic. These scars form just like keloids, but they stay close to the site of the injury, whereas keloid scars extend to a larger area of skin. Hypertrophic scars usually look pink, and they can fade over time. Laser therapy can help flatten both keloid and hypertrophic scars and reduce the redness, making them less prominent. We can address the pigmentation that make scars stand out from the rest of your skin using BroadBand Light treatments.
Acne scars can be raised or pitted. Either way, they’re no fun. Most people get pitted scars after a bad bout of acne, which means the acne leaves little indentations in the skin. There are varying types of acne scars, including ice pick scars, boxcar scars, and rolling scars. Depending on the severity of your acne and how well your skin heals naturally, your acne scars may be large or small.
In some cases, they might be barely noticeable. Other times, large, deep acne scars can make you extremely self-conscious. Laser treatment can help close up your pitted (atrophic) acne scars and reduce their size. Using light energy, the laser will stimulate your skin’s growth so that it fills in the depressions for a smoother, more even look. This approach can also work for other types of pitted scars, like those left over from chickenpox.
Laser therapy is generally a very safe procedure, but there are certain situations in which it isn’t advisable or simply won’t be effective. Patients with skin conditions like psoriasis, dermatitis, and cystic acne will probably want to steer clear of laser treatment. Also, some forms of laser therapy aren’t recommended for people with darker skin types – though more options are opening up all the time.
If you decide laser treatment is for you, you may want to make a few small adjustments to your lifestyle leading up to the procedure. For example, if you take acne medication like isotretinoin, you will need to stop taking it for six months prior to your laser treatment. You’ll also need to watch out for sun exposure, as laser treatment works best on skin that’s not sunburned or tan. A consultation is necessary to determine if your scar can be treated and to discuss your treatment plan. Laser scar treatments take time and will often require a commitment of 6 or more treatments.
We are committed to work with you to develop a synergistic approach for enhancing your skin’s health and beauty. During your consultation we will address your specific needs and goals and answer any questions or concerns you may have about the procedure. In addition, we will make recommendations as to the best treatment plan for achieving your desired results.
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