Acne affects both teens and adults, women and men. In fact, the American Academy of Dermatology notes that acne incidence in adults is on the rise, affecting as many as 15% of women into their 30s and 40s. As if acne itself isn’t frustrating enough, it can leave behind permanent scars. Fortunately, laser acne scar treatment can significantly improve both the texture and tone of your skin.
WHAT ARE ACNE SCARS?
Acne causes pores in the skin to become clogged with excess oil, bacteria and dead skin cells. The pores become inflamed, damaging the skin, and the body’s natural response is to replace the damaged skin with tougher scar tissue.
Even mild to moderate acne can cause hyperpigmentation, red or brown discoloration that eventually resolves on its own. Scars are usually produced by more severe acne, and scarring is permanent. Laser acne scar treatment can greatly reduce the visibility of facial acne scars.
NEARLY EVERYONE DEALS WITH ACNE
If acne has left you with permanent scarring, you’re not alone. Some 50 million Americans suffer with acne each year, making it the most common skin condition in the US. There are several types of acne scars, some more common than others:
- Ice pick scars (97%) are narrow but deep
- Rolling scars (82%) form moderate to deep depressions that give the skin’s surface a wavy appearance
- Boxcar scars (61%) are deep and have steeply defined sides
- Keloid scars (15%) are different in that the skin tissue forms raised bumps on the skin’s surface
LASER TREATMENTS FOR ACNE SCARS
Because different types of lasers work in different ways, these devices give us the opportunity to craft treatment plans that address each patient’s specific skin condition and goals. Here at RFA, Dr. Jeff Raval may recommend:
- IPL (intense pulsed light) works below the skin’s surface, using short bursts of intense light to stimulate new collagen production.
- ProFractional laser treatment uses micro-fine beams of energy instead of light, creating tiny wounds at and below the surface to trigger new collagen and cell production as part of the natural healing process. This device treats just a fraction of the surface area yet produces overall smoother texture and more even tone.
- Microlaser peel is a technique we use to exfoliate just the surface layer of the skin. It is much gentler than typical chemical peels.
- Triple peel is a proprietary house specialty here at RFA, a treatment that combines IPL, ProFractional and Microlaser peel techniques in a single, three-step procedure so patients benefit from all three.
Risks of Laser Treatments for Acne Scars
Lasers can cause serious, even permanent skin and tissue damage if used improperly. However, in the hands of a skilled medical professional, they are safe and highly effective. Risks and post-procedure side-effects are minimal, typically including:
- Mild swelling
- Discomfort or itching
One important note: we cannot perform laser resurfacing if you still have active acne or if you have recently taken isotretinoin to treat your acne. When you’re in remission, then you’ll be ready for scar treatment. (We can help you get to remission faster, with Blu-U and IPL light treatments and specialized skincare products.)
Benefits of Laser Acne Scar Treatment
There are innumerable over-the-counter and prescription gels and creams you can purchase to treat acne-caused hyperpigmentation and/or exfoliate surface skin. However, these cannot produce the kind of significant, permanent results you can achieve with a medical procedure.
We love laser resurfacing for acne scars because it is highly precise and gives us maximum flexibility in treating patients. Patients themselves love laser acne scar treatment because it is:
- Not painful (we use numbing cream before treating deep scars)
- Gentler than procedures such as dermabrasion
- Has only mild after-effects
- Provides immediately-impressive results that last
Can laser acne laser scar treatment benefit you?
Scheduling a personal video consultation is the best way to find out.