Caring for Scarring
This blog will cover 2 of the 3 main types of scars that we as Skincare Professionals encounter on a day-to-day basis. There are several forms that scarring can take and each one requires specific care.
Sep 3, 2019 10:00:17 AM / by The Institute of Skin Science
This blog will cover 2 of the 3 main types of scars that we as Skincare Professionals encounter on a day-to-day basis. This does not cover ALL forms of scarring that can occur. First, we need to identify the “type” of scarring we are caring for. There are several forms that scarring can take and each one requires specific care. Remember as Aestheticians we are not able to diagnose our clients, but we are able to care for them with treatments and home care recommendations. 2 Common Types of Scars
Textured Scarring Textured Scars are typically categorized by a disruption to the skins’ normal appearance. The characteristics are either raised/elevated or result in a lack/loss of skin tissue.
Atrophic is formed when the skin is unable to properly regenerate tissue, leaving behind a loss or “pitted” scar. This causes an indentation in the skin that heals below the normal layer or level of tissue. Typically the skin does not produce enough collagen or elastin to heal the skin or the skin was repeatedly wounded resulting in a loss of collagen.
Ice pick: Small, narrow or pitted punctures in the skin
Boxcar: “Chickenpox” scars, flat base with borders—splattered look.
Rolling: No distinct edges, generally found on the cheeks and look like folds.
Treatment Options for Atrophic Scarring Chemical Peels and Microneedling are fantastic options for atrophic scarring. These treatments resurface the skin, boosting collagen and elastin, helping to smooth and plump areas of concern. Depending on the depth and severity, it will determine the number of treatments needed. General guidelines for treatment Mild = 2-6 Treatments Moderate = 6-10 Treatments Advanced = 8-14 Treatments Keloids are raised scarring and occur when scar tissue continues to form after the wound has healed. Typically the body continues to stimulate an excess amount of collagen resulting in a scar that is raised and “bubbled”. Unfortunately, as Aestheticians this type of scarring is not something we can care for. However, it’s very important in your consultation that you ask your clients about keloid scarring in their family history. You will want to be cautious doing any superficial - medium depth treatment on them. Prevention is always the goal with this client! It’s unclear why this happens but there are a few conditions where keloid scarring is more likely to occur.
Latino, African American or Asian
Younger than 30 years old
Pregnant or Nursing
Adolescence - Puberty
History of Keloid Scars in Family
Pigment Scarring The last type of scarring is “Pigment” or Hyperpigmentation. This is caused when trauma or inflammation to the skin occurs, leaving behind reddish-brown or purple marks and discoloration.
Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation
Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH) is when discoloration forms after inflammation from an injury or lesion. PIH often occurs with an acne lesion and can remain for many weeks or more after the lesion is gone. Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation is one of the more manageable scars to care for because it’s considered more superficial and does not typically involve tissue. However, it is still important to address hyperpigmentation as soon as it occurs. The first form of action is to introduce lighteners into a nightly regimen. These lighteners are called “Tyrosinase Inhibitors” and work to prevent the enzyme, Tyrosine, from over signaling pigment production. Tyrosinase Inhibitor Ingredients
In addition to lighteners, it’s imperative that clients use a Broad Spectrum SPF and reapply as needed when spending time outside. We strongly recommend using both physical and chemical protectors in order to protect and prevent damage. It’s important to remember that once a client's skin has developed hyperpigmentation, they will always need to use a tyrosinase inhibitor in their regimen to prevent it from reappearing.
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Written by The Institute of Skin Science