Acne scars on the body make the skin look unappealing by affecting the skin’s tone and texture. It is often seen that people who suffer from acne on their faces, also have acne on other body parts like the shoulders, back, neck, and arms. These pimples frequently leave behind scars and make the sufferer suffer some more. As if the acne leaving behind scars on your face wasn’t enough, they also tend to leave behind marks on your body that seem to last forever.
While taking care of facial acne, it is also important to utilize body acne scar treatments so that they do not remain there forever and lower your confidence in any way. This article will discuss the best treatment options for acne scars on the body. But, before we delve into these, let us understand what these scars imply.
What Causes Acne Scars?
In reality, body acne can be more intense than facial acne because of the high levels of clogging these pores experience. Inflammation and redness are often seen with acne on the body such as back acne (or bacne). When these pimples heal or when they are popped due to the application of pressure or even due to friction from clothing, they leave behind scars.
During the healing process, the collagen fibers in the skin rearrange themselves resulting in the formation of a raised or a depressed scar. When compared to the face, raised or hypertrophic scars are more commonly seen when body acne heal. Thus, this is how body acne scars are formed.
Different Types of Acne Scars On Your Body
Body acne scars are classified into different types based on their shape and dimensions –
- Ice-pick scars (V-shaped, deep scars)
- Boxcar scars (round, depressed scars)
- Rolling scars (wave-like scars)
- Raised scars (hypertrophic or keloid scars)
How To Get Rid Of Body Acne Scars?
Here are the commonly used treatments that are best for body acne scars –
- Intralesional Corticosteroid Injections – When the scars are raised, intralesional injections containing corticosteroids are given at the affected region to reduce the height of the scar. The corticosteroids work by reducing the inflammation and slowing down the excess collagen production that has lead the scar to become raised above the skin’s surface. With results visible in a day or two, a few repeated sessions can also be performed for severe body acne marks.
- Laser Therapy – This is often used as a back acne scar treatment as a larger surface area of the body can be easily covered with this therapy. A fractional laser is the best thing for acne scars is it exfoliates the top, damaged layers of the skin and leaves the healthy skin intact in the treated area to promote healing and recovery. Collagen production is initiated, which causes depressed scars to fill up giving you a smoother skin.
- Cryosurgery – For spot scar treatment, cryosurgery has shown results in many people. Usually, liquid nitrogen is used to freeze the damaged skin. This skin slowly starts to form a scab which eventually heals to reveal fresh, scar-free skin. Cryosurgery can be used to get rid of bacne (back acne) scars or those on the chest that is usually larger in size and raised scars.
- Scar Surgery – When the scars go a lot deeper into the skin (such as ice-pick scars), scar surgery may be required to break up the connective tissue and lift the scar. This is usually followed up by other treatments like laser therapy or chemical peels.
- Dermabrasion – In dermabrasion, a fine metal tip or a diamond blade is used to exfoliate the skin and remove the damaged and scarred layer. The healing time of this treatment is longer when compared to laser therapy and can be up to three weeks. Mild cases of acne scars on back and shoulders are easily removed with this treatment. Deep acne scars show no results when treated with dermabrasion. Side effects include redness and swelling, which is often transient.
- Chemical Peels – Depending on the amount of the discoloration caused by the acne scars on the body, chemical peels can be used to remove it to reveal lighter and blemish-free skin. Salicylic acid and glycolic acid are commonly used for body acne marks removal. In the case of ice-pick scars, a specialized peel known as TCA peel is used to improve collagen production and fill up the space created by the scar.
- Skin Grafts – When all other treatments fail or prove to be unsuitable, dermatologists recommend opting for skin graft surgery to remove body acne scars. This is a proper surgical procedure that involves removing the damaged skin and replacing it with healthy skin tissue. It involves a hospital stay and the recovery period is also long when you opt for this treatment.
Dermatologist Suggested Tips Remove Body Acne Scars
Along with the treatments, it is important to follow proper skincare for acne scars on the body so that they do not aggravate any further and heal quickly.
- Use a dermatologist-recommended cleanser and moisturizer to take care of the acne-affected skin.
- Do not pick at your pimples as this can worsen the condition.
- Use a sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 30 on all exposed areas of the body.
- Ask your dermatologist to recommend an ideal dosage of vitamin C supplements as it aids in the skin healing process.
- Drink plenty of water as hydration is necessary for the skin to heal and recover.
Acne scars on the body can be mild or severe. Either way, they can ruin the beauty of your skin and make you self-conscious. The available treatment options ensure that body acne scars are improved and eventually removed with a few treatment sessions. Pick the one that will work the best for you with the help of an experienced dermatologist.