Sometimes scars can be a bit sexy. Scars can add a unique appearance, or even make someone look a little more daring and dangerous. However, if you ask most people who don a scar, they would like to reduce its appearance.
Scars can be cumber some and annoying. Whether it’s just their appearance that is a bit troubling, or maybe they cause physical pain, most people want to rid of their scars.
Generally speaking, scars are unavoidable. Scars are a part of the natural healing process. Yet, this does not necessarily mean that you must walk around with them for the rest of your life. There are some ways to strategically ensure that your skin heals in a healthy way while keeping scars at bay.
Before learning about the dos and don’ts, you should understand the background behind scars. Why is it that they have such a bad rep?
The Truth About Scars
Scars are basically inevitable if any form of trauma occurs to your skin. The smallest scrape or the largest surgery can both leave you with a scar, and this is perfectly normal. Any time the skin is injured, collagen begins to produce rapidly and go into a sort of overdrive to help heal the wound as quickly as possible.
Once collagen begins this hyperactive process, the tissue that heals does not contain the normal components of your skin, so in effect the skin does not look the same. However, you really should thank your body for this process, because this is your body’s way of keeping infections away from your vital organs, such as your skin.
The appearance of your scars will depend on a few different factors. The severity of the amount of blood that can flow to that area, your natural skin color, and your skin’s thickness all help determine what your scar will look like. The type of scar you have will also affect the appearance.
Here are the different types of scars:
- Acne Scars: Just as they sound, acne scars are the direct result of an acne issue. If you have a recent breakout, and you tamper with the zits or acne in any way, then you can leave your skin with a small scar.
Even if you don’t mess with your acne, they can still leave small scars if the wounds are big enough.Acne scars tend to be quite small, and they are easy to remove or reduce.
- Contracture Scars: The burned skin most likely leaves contracture scars. First, second, and third degree burns can all leave contracture scars.
Therefore, a contracture scar can be both superficial or deep. Depending on the severity of the contracture scar, there can be a fine small line, or a deep and raised scar.It is possible to reduce contracture scars, but it will depend on the severity of the scar in the first place.
- Hypertrophic Scars: Hypertrophic scars can occur from mostly any type of skin trauma, whether accidental or surgical. You can identify a hypertrophic scar because it will generally be red and raised. These types of scars extend around the perimeter of the wound, but they will not spread beyond that point.Hypertrophic scars can be stubborn and difficult to reduce. In fact, they can even cause pain if the original wound is located on a joint.
Keloid Scars: Keloid scars tend to be the most stubborn of the bunch. These scars will appear similarly to a hypertrophic scar; however, they grow and spread well beyond the area of the original wound. Keloid scars will appear to be red and raised, but sometimes they can also be a purple hue or even grey. This will mostly depend on your skin’s natural tone. It is possible to reduce the appearance of keloid scars, but it takes quite a bit of effort.
Now that you can identify your type of scar, it is necessary to ensure that you are helping to promote proper healing. Here are seven common dos and don’ts to help your scar heal effectively.
1. Know When To Get Stitches
Stitches can be both good and bad for your scar. You absolutely should have stitches done in certain situations, but you should not in others. There is a fine line, so here are the facts about stitches and scars.
If your cut is two or three inches in length, or is relatively deep, then medical attention is highly advised. Even if you do not essentially want stitches, they might be necessary for your particular wound.
Don’t assume that stitches will make the scar appear worse. In some cases, avoiding stitches can lead to infection or an even worse scar than you wanted in the first place.
Do have your stitches put in as early as possible. Follow the general rule of two or three inches in length or a deep cut necessitating a trip to the emergency room.
Stitches require a fresh wound. Wounds become contaminated with germs and bacteria if too much time elapses. At that point, a doctor will not want to give you stitches and lock the nasty germs and bacteria inside of the wound.Also, if you wait too long then a wound can begin to heal naturally. Once a wound begins to heal, it will not be effective for a doctor to then perform stitches.
It is best to follow the basic rules of length and depth when determining whether or not you go to a doctor for your wound. There are a few things you can do for your wound, though, either on your way to the doctor’s or even healing it on your own.
2. Moisture Is A Must
Keeping your wound properly moist and wet will enable your wound to heal nicely. You can add moisture to the wound with a product such as petroleum jelly or Neosporin. Both of these products include moisture and ingredients to help keep bacteria and germs away.
After you apply some moisture to the wound, you should then cover it with a non-stick bandage. You can use a bandage if it fits properly around the wound. If not, then try using sterile pads with a bandage around it.
Do not apply only a bandage to the wound. The moisture is essential because it helps to prevent scabbing. If you only put on a band aid or dressing, then you will have a painful time ripping off a scab in a few days.
You can stop covering your wound once you see new skin forming. In fact, it is often advisable that you let your new wound breathe some air in order to formulate new healthy skin. Keeping the wound overprotected only prohibits proper growth.
It is necessary that you protect your wound with the appropriate dressing, but it is also important to have some patience.
3. Don’t Rush Things
The healing process can take quite some time. You should wait for a few weeks and don’t rush the healing process. Certainly, it might be annoying to keep the bandage on.
You might have to reapply the dressing multiple times, and you should probably avoid certain activities when healing a wound appropriately.
Sometimes it’s tempting to rush the process and speed up the process by picking at a scab or applying hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide can be beneficial when you apply it immediately to the wound, but using it after this time only causes good skin cells and good bacteria to die off.
You should allow your body time to heal naturally. For larger wounds, it can take one to two years for a scar to fully mature. For smaller wounds, let them scab over and allow the scab to heal naturally. If you pick at the scab, then a new one will grow and you can double the healing time.
You can always use some approved products to help reduce the appearance of the scar after it has formed.
If you find that after the year or so your skin has an unwanted scar at the site of wound, then there are a few different ways you can work to reduce it. For example, compression bandages help to reduce inflammation of scars.
You can purchase compression bandages at your local pharmacy. Also, there are many topical creams and ointments on the market. Skin treatments such as those found at www.DermeffaceFX7.com are both safe and effective. You can also try home remedies to reduce the appearance of your scars.
Regardless of your method to fade your scar, you should absolutely consult your physician or dermatologist first. Side effects are always possible, and the medical professional can attest to your body’s unique specifications and needs. For example, if you have allergies then your doctor will know what ingredients you should stay away from to avoid harsh side effects.
4. Get A Massage
Your scar might make you feel stressed, but believe it or not the massage is not for you. The massage is for your scar. Yes, as silly as it sounds, you should be massaging your scar.
Gentle massages can be extremely helpful when preventing your scar from becoming too large or raised. As soon as you can tolerate it, massage your wound gently. This usually can begin a few weeks after the original wound.
Working the skin helps to break up collagen. Collagen is helpful in the healing process because it promotes the growth of new skin. By breaking up collagen, you are enabling the healing process to take place quickly and effectively.
Gentle massages also help to break up skin tissue, which reduces the likelihood of a large scar from forming. These gentle massages are quite beneficial, so long as you make sure you are not out in the sun.
5. Stay Out Of The Sun
As relaxing as it can be to catch some rays, the sun’s harsh effects are detrimental to your wound’s healing process.
Damaging ultraviolet rays interrupt the healing process. They actually work against the healing process and make the development of an ugly scar much more likely. This is because the ultraviolet rays discolor scar tissue and instead stimulate the production of pigment within the skin.
When your skin is healing, it is at an extremely vulnerable state. Discoloration may occur during the healing process, so any sun exposure almost guarantees skin discoloration in your healing wound.
If you absolutely must be out in the sun while your wound is healing, then you should cover it up either with a bandage or clothing. If you are using a bandage then remember to keep the wound moist, and use a clean nonstick bandage.
You can also use SPF if scab has formed on your wound. You never want to apply sunscreen if new skin has not yet grown back.
6. Don’t Encourage Scar Formation
Obviously, accidents or necessary surgeries can cause scars, which you can’t help. However, you can prevent the appearance of acne scars.
Refrain from popping your acne breakouts.Popping can lead to the formation of ugly scars.Also, never scratch at any scars left by a zit.In fact, you might even be able to prevent acne from appearing in the first place if you following this last tip.
7. Take Care Of Your Skin
Following an appropriate skin care regimen can ensure that your skin is healthy if you do ever suffer from a wound. You should identify a cleanser and toner that works well for your skin. Twice a day, cleanse your skin, tone your skin, and then moisturize it. Twice a week, use exfoliating cleansers in replace of the regular cleanser.
With the right skin regime, suitable for your skin type, your skin will be moisturized and healthy. Healthy skin will certainly heal nicely, so this is an effective preventative measure when looking to keep scars at bay.
Pat attention to these dos and don’ts, and pay attention to your skin. If problems persist, enlist in the help of your doctor or a dermatologist. Take the necessary time, and follow all of the essential precautions needed to allow your skin to heal. By following these tips, you can be sure your wound will heal effectively.