How Laser Acne Scar Removal Works

Even the most self-controlled among us who may never have picked a pimple or a chicken pox in their life will have some scarring left behind. It is just the skins way of healing from any blemish. Fortunately this scarring for the most is very mild and only visible upon close inspection of the skin – a privilege normally reserved for loved ones and doctors.

Usually healing from acne scarring can be assisted greatly by eating the right foods and treated using prescription and over the counter products such as retinoids. These methods have a lot of happy customers. However, sometimes these products are just not enough and the scarring is just too difficult to get rid of.

Fortunately, more serious acne scarring is not as common, but those affected by it can suffer in all areas of their life. It affects our self-esteem and body self-image. In this is the case it is important to do what you can in order to assist your skin to recover its healthy complexion. If you are one of those people who have had no luck with topical scar treatments, then you may need to start considering laser treatment.

Before we look at the different laser acne scar removal treatments available, we need to understand the different types of scarring that occur. We can then determin what treatments will be the most suitable for you. There are four main types of scars that occur as a result of suffering from acne. These are categorised as:

  • Keloid or Hypertrophic
  • Rolling
  • Boxcar
  • Ice Pick

How Does Laser Scar Removal Work

Laser scar removal can be used on rolling, boxcar and ice picks scar types but not keloid or hypertrophic. It works by using a laser to precisely target your scar tissue skin and burns it off. As a result new, healthy skin can grow in its place, greatly reducing the scarring effect.

The process involves the patient having a local anaesthetic while a laser is passed over the skin up to three times, removing the layers off scar tissue as needed.It is very important to remember that laser scar removal is a very new procedure and has not been around for very long. That means that the techniques used are still evolving and being perfected. The reality is that the results can be somewhat varied.

The cost of laser treatment is expensive, coming in around $3,000-6,000 per treatment. The chances are you may have to undergo the treatment more than once. You may also be able to have the treatment done under a healthcare insurance policy.

The CO2 Acne Scar Removal Laser

The CO2 laser is a very powerful treatment removing deep layers of scar damaged skin. It can have very positive and dramatic results and is favoured in cases of extreme scarring or skin resurfacing. A single treatment for acne scarring usually lasts from 15 to 45 minutes.

The negatives are that the side effects, which include redness of skin and are likely to be much stronger and last longer due to the severity of the treatment. The initial reaction fades after two weeks where the skin begins to recover and heal. Depending on the intensity of the treatment, the healing process will take 1 – 4 months.

Erbium skin or Er:YAG Laser

The Erbium laser is another type of laser used for acne scar removal. This treatment tends to be much milder with greatly reduced side effects. It works by sending highly targeted pulses of light to the scar tissue. An anethetic will also be required due to the pain involved in such a process.

Healing only takes a few days rather than the month or more for the CO2 laser. It is however considered much less effective as a result and is suitable for much lower levels of scarring.

Laser Skin Needling or Fractional Laser

The fractional laser or laser skin needling is a much gentler process and more accessible cost wise. No anaesthetic is required and healing time is much faster. Because of this, it is much more common for more cosmetic based treatments with people using it to treat wrinkles and laughter lines as well as acne scarring. It’s also suitable for patients with darker skin types due to the accurate targeting of the laser.

To treat acne scars you will need about 4/5 treatments each costing up to $1000 each. The side effects are a lot less than the CO2 laser with redness, flakiness and swelling all reducing after just a few days. The fractional laser is suitable for all scar types but not for keloid type scarring.

All of  these types of laser scar removal have the potential to have a lot of lasting side effects. It’s very important to speak to your doctor or dermatologist so you fully understand the risks involved in having such a treatment.

Hormonal Therapy and Acne

If you have tried all the different kinds of acne treatment solutions out there and haven’t had any success, then you are probably sitting there frustrated by the fact that you’re losing the battle, and it doesn’t seem like reinforcements are arriving. With so many options out there, why can’t one of them work for you?

If you find yourself in this difficult situation, don’t despair: There is one type of acne solution that may just turn the tide in your favor. Hormonal therapy for acne has been shown to have promising results for those with resistant acne that won’t go away when treated with everything else. Below is some information about this method.

Definition: What Is it?

Hormonal therapy for acne is just what it sounds like: A process that modifies the hormones in your body in an attempt to reverse the acne in your skin. One of the main causes of acne is an excess amount of the male androgen hormones, which cause more oil to be produced by your skin. Keep in mind that both men and women have androgen hormones in their body; males just have a much higher amount. These hormones control the glands that produce skin oil, and if there is an excess of them, the glands enlarge and put out more oil, thus leading to clogged pores and an outbreak of acne. Hormonal therapy involves pills that are taken orally every day, which contain ingredients to control the amount of androgen hormones in the body.

Read more: Does Coffee Cause Acne?

The Science of It: How Does it Work? The Complicated Technical Part

As you have probably put together, hormonal therapy works by reducing the amount of androgen hormones in your system. As mentioned above, these hormones cause the oil producing glands to enlarge, thus leading to clogged pores. By lowering these hormones, there will not be as much oil produced, which means that pores will be clearer and outbreaks will not happen as often or as severely.

It’s All About the Results: What Can I Expect The Good and the Bad

Hormonal therapy for acne has demonstrated positive results for the majority of those who have used it. It is especially effective when combined with other acne treatment methods, such as peroxides or antibiotics, which are more designed to eliminate existing acne instead of preventing future breakouts.

Let’s Stack it Against the Others: How Does it Compare? Pros vs. Cons

In comparison to other acne treatment methods, hormonal therapy can be considered equally effective as other conventional means. The two key points to fighting acne are eliminating the current acne on the skin, and then preventing any outbreaks in the future. Hormonal therapy accomplishes the latter half of this objective, and when combined with another method that performs the former, acne often doesn’t stand a chance.

I’ve Got Money to Spend: Is It Worth It and Does it Have a High Value?

It is difficult to determine the value of hormonal therapy, since it is a prescription medication which may or may not be affected by your insurance. Some insurances cover hormone adjustment medications while others don’t – you will need to check with your provider to see if they do. If you don’t have insurance, or if yours does not cover hormonal therapy, you may find yourself responsible for a very high-priced medication.

Alright, You’ve Convinced Me: Where Can I Find It Today?

To restate, hormonal therapy medications are only available by prescription and can’t be found in a store. If you would like to pursue this option, you should set up an appointment with your doctor and see whether this method is right for you. In conclusion, hormonal therapy has the potential to make the difference when it comes to your fight against acne. When everything else has failed, you can turn to this method and join the thousands of other teens and adults who have found relief. It may be best for you to give your doctor or dermatologist a call and see if this type of acne treatment is right for you.