Maintaining Good Health Even When You're Busy

Acne Aftermath: 3 Ways To Get Rid Of Ice-Pick Scarring After Years Of Bad Breakouts

by Caitlin Obara

Millions of teenagers and even adults today deal with bad acne, and bouts of breakouts often last for years until the right treatment is found or hormones finally regulate themselves naturally. Once acne has diminished, the scars left behind can be just as bothersome, if not more, than the past acne itself. A common type of scarring acne can leave behind is called ice-pick scarring. Read on to find out if this is the type of scarring you may have and what treatments are available

What Are Ice-pick Scars?

Ice pick scars are typically caused by deep, cystic acne, although they can occur after less severe acne, especially if you picked at it a lot. This type of scarring makes your skin appear to have tiny indentations on it, and it can range from one or two indentations to many that cover your entire face. It is caused by skin trauma that deep acne and skin-picking can cause. 

This is one type of acne scarring that is difficult to get rid of at home. You can help it look less severe by using a glycolic acid cream or serum daily, but that may only improve this scarring slightly over many years of application. 

Treatments Available for Ice-pick Acne Scars

To get rid of ice pick scarring completely, you will need to visit a skin specialist, who may offer one or more of the following treatments:

  1. Deep Acid Peels or Laser skin resurfacing. These are two treatments that differ a lot in how they are performed, but aim to achieve a similar result. The goal of both treatments is to reduce the depth of your scarring by removing the top layer of your skin and replace it with healthy, more even-textured skin. 
  2. Punch Excision. During this procedure, each individual ice-pick scar is punctured in a circular formation and then sutured back up with small stitches. The goal of this treatment is to reshape the scars, so they become flat and less noticeable instead of deep crevices in your skin.  
  3. Cosmetic fillers. While cosmetic fillers, such as collagen or hyaluronic acid injections, are best known as ways to treat the signs of aging, they can also be used to treat indented acne scarring. Once other treatments have been used to minimize scarring, there may be a few stubborn indentations that just won't go away. An injection of a tiny amount of dermal filler in an indented scar can plump it up and help it lay more evenly with the rest of the skin's surface. 

A good skin specialist will look at your scars and determine what treatments are best for you, depending on the depth and severity of your scarring. 

It can be disheartening to have acne for years and realize you are still stuck with the scarring it caused when your skin finally clears up. However, a good skin care specialist can help you get rid of those scars, so you can finally have the even complexion you have wanted for years. For more information, contact a professional like those at Advanced Dermatology Care.