Acne sufferers know that having acne can be a burden, especially when it is aggressive and wide spread further than just the face. People are plagued with acne well through their teens into their adult years, some people never escape it.
There are endless products out there on the market – creams, soaps, face washes, face wipes, vitamins, tablets, special brushes you name it, the acne market has it. Yet, it is finding a course of treatment that works for your individual skin. Some people swear by products that just do absolutely nothing to shift the acne of others.
Some types of acne leave long lasting scars, which cause some people massive loss to their self esteem and leads to all sorts of mental health issues and appearance based mental health problems. There isn’t a lot you can do about any types of scars, that’s why they are called scars.
What are Acne Scars?
There are several types of scars that are caused and left behind by acne. You may not get any scarring from acne, but people who suffer from major outbreaks and complications often are left with scars as a reminder of the acne that once was.
There are a number of reasons for scarring including picking spots and various infections, or just plain old aggressive acne. They lead to three different types:
- Ice pick scars: Named so because they have the appearance that an ice pick would leave, i.e. small holes in the face or affected area. These are often deep and noticeable.
- Boxcar or crater scars: Deep crater type shapes in the skin, normally shaped like an oval.
- Rolling scars: These are more subtle but make the skin appear uneven and are formed underneath the skin itself.
So what can you do if your skin is left scarred by acne? Well, you can try all the products that swear they will help that are out there (and there are a lot). Or, some people turn to laser treatment.
Laser treatment for acne scars is one of the options that people turn to when the acne scarring is getting too much for their self esteem or mental health. It is one of the limited methods that actually reduces the effect and appearance of acne scarring. However, it is not a magic cure and will not remove scarring completely.
It is classed as a type of cosmetic surgery, and should be treated as such. You need to bear in mind that this surgery will not remove your scars completely, unfortunately and it might be hard to hear, nothing can do that. They will fade in time, and definitely drastically reduce in terms of how noticeable they are, but they will not disappear magically.
Laser treatment uses light beams that are either heating or cooling technology to focus on the bacteria that causes acne, the oil in the clogged pores, or the after effects of the two i.e. the scar that remains once the acne has gone.
The laser treatment itself can often require an anesthetic. This will numb the skin and prepare it for treatment. In rare cases, the patient will be sedated, though this is rarer than normal anesthetic pre-treatment. The person performing the laser treatment should be registered at a professional clinic, as this is a serious treatment and should be treated as such.
There is resurfacing laser treatment and there is treatment of the pores. One type focuses on the resurfacing, repair of or reproduction of the skin and its collagen. The other one focuses on removing the layers of damaged or scarred skin. What you need depends on your skin type, and the type of acne problem you are facing and need help with.
There are a lot of different types of acne laser scar treatment. They all vary in practice, but the results are much the same. It depends on skin type, aggressiveness of the scarring, how old the scars are, and how deep they are as to what treatment will work best for you.
A few traditional and standard, well-established treatments that have existed now for a number of years are as follows:
Ablative laser treatment uses lasers that target smaller portions of the skin that surrounds the acne scar. The end result is that they make the area of the skin around the scar look smoother, and newer. This type of treatment is built around resurfacing and deconstructing the skin and the scarred areas.
Non-ablative laser treatment uses lasers to repair the collagen and stimulate growth of new collagen. The end result is an overall improved appearance to the skin. This is focused on collagen repair, rather than removing any layer of skin. It is often regarded as less painful than ablative treatments.
Whichever treatment you decide, you will need to allow yourself some healing time. This can be anywhere between a few days and a few weeks. It depends on how your skin responds to treatment and how severe the scarring was beforehand. This recovery time should be factored into the retreatment as well, as one course of laser treatment for acne, is never sufficient.
Some alternative, newer treatments are also popping up in the cosmetic acne laser scar removal and blemish removal. As with anything, technology advances and improves, and there are constant developments in this industry to improve levels of pain, overall effectiveness and durability of the treatment.
The N-Lite laser treatment for pimples and acne is considered kinder on the skin than other, more established and tradition laser treatments for acne, acne scarring, and pimple problems.
N-Lite targets healing the skin, rather than targeting the pre-existing scar tissue that has formed on the skin itself. It does this through targeting the red blood flow through capillaries underneath the skin, stimulating them more so than they would be without treatment and therefore causing collagen re-growth at a faster rate than the skin would be otherwise capable of unaided.
Normally it does not cause a lot of pain or after effects of redness on the skin but of course this can vary from person to person. The results are also reported as variable, with many people reporting no improvement or very little improvement to actual acne. However, it is worth noting that the N-Lite treatment is intended for treating scars and skin re-growth, not acne itself.
Pro Yellow Laser Skin Rejuvenation is one of the other options out there available for people trying to rectify or diminish the appearance of acne scarring.
Pro Yellow Laser Skin rejuvenation is quite a natural approach to acne scarring as in the end result is quite natural looking, as though you are wearing makeup. It is not just used for acne scars, but a wider range of skin conditions as well such as skin brightening.
This type of treatment basically shrinks the blood vessels of the affected target area, and is 100% safe with guaranteed results in some form or another. The after effects are almost non-existent, which is a great perk of the treatment as well.
At home laser acne scar treatment
There are home remedies that exist and are sometimes often cheaper than in house cosmetic laser treatment for acne and acne scars.
You should only use them if it clearly states on the product information that it is FDA approved, then and only then will you be reassured that they are 100% safe to use. They are also less effective than the stronger, more professional laser treatments used in surgeries.
How much is acne laser treatment
So how much will it cost you? Well it really varies on type of treatment (i.e. what type of laser treatment you decide to pursue), place of treatment as some practices are more established than others or some offer more luxury services, length of treatment that is required which can only really be determined by a laser treatment skin care specialist and severity of treatment also.
The cost of laser treatment for acne scars can vary in ranges from $200 up to over $3,000, which doesn’t start off cheap and certainly doesn’t end cheap at the top range of the price bracket either.
The cost for home treatment can be somewhat cheaper, though again less effective. These devices start at around $40, and should always be used with caution and having read the proper instructions.
- Fast acting and with faster results than other routine treatments.
- Better results than any other type of treatment in terms of the reduction in scar appearance.
- New treatments available all the time that are thoroughly researched and improve in terms of pain levels and effectiveness.
- Always requires more than one session of laser treatment.
- Can be quite costly.
- Is not 100% effective, nor does it pretend to be so.
- Sometimes painful with regards to certain types of laser treatment.
- Side effects such as redness, pain and swelling.
After having laser treatment for acne scars you will more than likely be recommended another product to use as well such as medicine like targeted antibiotics or topical creams.
This is because laser treatment is not 100% effective, and the cause of acne and therefore acne scars needs addressing on a different level to help the cause and deter from needing further treatment and causing further problems.
There are many different types of medicine available from over the counter regular vitamins (zinc does wonders for the skin) to prescribed medication from your health care professional. Though you may think that you won’t need them if you opt for laser treatment instead, the reality is that you probably will and it should be considered alongside whichever option you decide.
The results won’t be the same for you as they are for other people, now this may mean that you will get better results and reduction in scar appearance, or it may mean that you will get worse ones and you may see no visible changes at all. There is no way of predicting this until you have had the treatment.
So in the worst case scenario, you may end up feeling like you have wasted your money completely.
It takes a number of treatments and a fair amount of time to get results from laser surgeries. Skin’s normal cycle of replenishing itself naturally is six weeks, it can take longer than this for the effects of the laser to take place and become noticeable. It is not a quick fast, though it is faster than other methods such as skin care regimes with exfoliations, moisturizers and traditional acne cleansers.
Side effects such as pain during and after treatment which can last for the duration of the course and afterwards as well is something that need considering. Redness and swelling can also occur, initially making the overall appearance worse and therefore the opposite intended effect to what you are trying to achieve through treatment.
There are lots of causes of acne up to and including poor diet choices ( too much sugar for example and not enough vegetables – sounds cliché but it really does affect the skin’s ability to heal and stay clear) , a lack of a sufficient skin care routine ( i.e. not cleaning the face and other affected areas thoroughly or at all), using the wrong products for your type of skin (i.e. using products tailor made for oily type skin when you have dry skin can aggravate and cause unwanted effects).
Many of these can be easily rectified by making small yet significant changes to your daily routine and lifestyle choices. Swap out your fizzy drinks for water, as the healing abilities and goodness levels in water are proven time and time again through research and usage.
Though if you have decided that laser treatment for your acne and consequential acne scars is the only option, then consider it carefully and with all the knowledge available to you.
It is also important to remember that though it may not make you feel better, people do not perceive the scarring as badly as you may see it through your own eyes.