Acne scarring

Having acne and acne scarring is a frustrating experience. Contrary to what many uninformed people may think, acne is not necessarily related to being unhygienic or cleansing incorrectly. More often than not, hormonal imbalances play a significant role in the presence of acne. If you were finally able to find the right treatment for you, acne has a tendency to leave bad scarring.

More accurately, acne scarring is the result of inflamed blemishes caused by skin pores engorged with excess oil, dead skin cells and bacteria. The pore swells, causing a break in the follicle wall. Basically, when your pores are clogged your skin struggles to breathe and absorb ingredients in from your skin products, even if the product is good.

Here’s what you need to know:

Most of us are guilty of seeing all acne scarrings as the same, which isn’t the case. There are two main types of acne scarring. Namely, hypertrophic or keloid scarring which is caused when the body produces too much collagen as acne wounds heal. And atrophic or depressed scarring which has two sub-categories. ‘Icepick’ scars are usually small and visible, and ‘boxcar’ scars, usually round or oval in shape and steeply angled.

Acne is one thing to deal with, the scarring that is left behind is another thing. In addition to any treatments and creams, sunscreen is a vital part of preventing acne or any skin complications. Everyone or every skin tone, acne scarring or not, should be using sunscreen on a daily basis - especially if you spend a lot of time under direct sunlight. It will certainly help the worsening of your scars.

Treatment options

  • Prescription creams.
  • Products and cosmeceuticals.
  • Glycolic acid peels.
  • Laser therapy.
  • Dermapen micro-needling.
  • Dermal Fillers.
  • Surgical excision.
  • Hormonal therapy.

Acne scars are a little more difficult to deal with because people do not respond to the same treatments. Fading acne scars is not an quick process, but a journey with your dermatologist. Dr Ayanda Motau breaks down the difference between your dark marks and acne scars, why they appear, and how to treat them effectively so you can make informed decisions on your treatment.