Scarring comes in many forms, including injury scars, acne scars, and stretch marks. Fortunately, there are several treatment options you can explore. But can scars be removed permanently with scar therapy? This can be a difficult question to answer since it will depend on the type of scar you have and the treatment you are using.
Scar Therapy FAQs
1. Can You Remove Scars Permanently?
Frankly, to actually “remove” a scar, one would need to remove the affected skin, which would then create a different type of scar. If you have scars on your skin, then the best you can do is minimize or reduce the appearance of the scar. There may be some treatments that can permanently minimize the appearance of some scars.
To permanently reduce the appearance of a scar, you will need to address the cause of the scar which can either be an over-production or an under-production of collagen. There are some treatments that can restructure the collagen in the skin to permanently shrink and minimize scar tissue, while other treatments may have a temporary result. Common scar therapy options include:
Lumecca Light Therapy
Light therapy is a popular non-invasive option that can be used to reduce the appearance of certain acne scarring and stretch marks. The Lumecca system can increase collagen and elastin production, turn over new skin cells, and also improve the overall health of the skin. The results of this treatment are temporary for certain scarring, or semi-permanent for stretch marks.
Morpheus8 is an advanced collagen-restructuring treatment that uses radiofrequency energy to stimulate the production of new collagen deep within the sub-dermal layers of the skin. This unique treatment is appropriate for acne scarring and stretch marks. Morpheus8 can shrink the appearance of scarring, correct hyperpigmentation, and improve the tone and health of the skin. The results of this treatment can last for several months to a year or more.
Chemical peels are a subtle form of minimizing the appearance of certain scars. Scars related to pigmentation and very shallow scarring from acne will usually respond well to chemical peels since the deep exfoliation will remove layers of dead skin cells and promote more even tone and texture. The results of chemical peels can last for about one to two months at a time for light peels, three to four months for medium peels, and several years for deep peels.
You may also be able to use dermal fillers to treat certain types of scarring. Fillers are usually most appropriate for acne scarring or shallow scarring that isn’t responsive to collagen-boosting treatments. Fillers create artificial volume that will fill-in the depression left by a scar so all skin tissues have the same volume, which will then minimize the appearance of the scar. Most fillers can create results that last for about one year.
Platelet-rich plasma is a newer type of scar therapy that is ideal for acne scarring, keloid scars, burn scars, and surgical scars. Unlike other forms of scar treatment, you can use PRP while scars are relatively new since this treatment utilizes your body’s natural healing ability to accelerate healing and collagen production. PRP can be combined with microneedling or Morpheus8 to reduce scar visibility.
2. How Many Treatments Will You Need?
Most scar treatments will require multiple appointments to see significant results. Treating scars means restructuring current collagen in the skin and producing more collagen, both of which will take time. For some treatments, such as Lumecca and Morpheus8, you may need three to six initial treatments to see desired results. For chemical peels and PRP, you may need one to three treatments or more to reduce the appearance of scars.
3. How Soon Will You See Results?
Most of the time, you will be able to notice visible improvements in the appearance of your scar about one to two months after your initial treatments. The results of your treatment will continue to improve as new skin cells are turned over and as new collagen is produced in the deepest layers of the skin. You will likely see results more quickly if you are treating mild scarring and hyperpigmentation.
4. Can You Enhance Results?
For many, the desire to reduce the appearance of scarring means doing everything you can to promote faster skin healing and collagen production. One way you can enhance the results of your treatment is to combine multiple scar therapy techniques to address the cause of scarring from multiple levels. You can also enhance your results by using certain scar care products with your treatments, like silicone gels or creams.
5. How Can You Maintain Results?
The best way to maintain the results of your scar treatment is to prevent new scarring. For those who have acne, preventing acne breakouts can greatly reduce the possibility of new acne scars. For those who are treating stretch marks, maintaining a healthy body weight will also prevent scarring in the future. Keeping your skin hydrated and protecting your skin from the sun will also reduce the risk of other types of scarring.
Find Your Ideal Scar Treatment Today
Scars are generally a permanent skin condition, but you may be able to minimize the appearance of scars with treatments that produce long-term results. Contact AURAE MD in La Jolla, CA to schedule your initial appointment with Dr. Margo Aura Emami to explore your scar treatment options today.