1 Understanding Acne Scars: Exploring Causes, Treatment Strategies, and – MD Skin Lab Canada

Understanding Acne Scars: Exploring Causes, Treatment Strategies, and Acne Scar Science

Understanding Acne Scars: Exploring Causes, Treatment Strategies, and Acne Scar Science

Are you tired of dealing with stubborn acne scars that just won't fade away? The battle against acne is one thing, but the battle against the lasting scars it leaves behind can be equally frustrating! Imagine a world where those stubborn acne scars, the remnants of past breakouts, no longer hold you back! That is where acne scar treatments come into play.

The MD Skin Lab team understands the difficulties of acne scars, so we strategically offer treatments to help our clients achieve the beautiful skin they desire. This blog post explores the meaning, causes and treatments for acne scarring. In addition, we will analyze some practical approaches to battle acne and reduce the appearance of acne scars, helping you achieve the skin you deserve! Let's start with the basics.

Understanding Acne Scarring Development

Acne is a common skin condition that can impact individuals of all ages, causing physical and emotional distress. While many consider acne a temporary issue, the aftermath can sometimes remain in the form of acne scars. Understanding how acne scars form is vital for preventing or controlling these long-term consequences.

"Acne scars represent the aftermath of severe skin inflammation following breakouts. They often cause severe distress and impact our self-esteem. They happen when the skin's normal healing gets off balance, leading either to an overproduction of tissue and consequently raised scars or an underproduction resulting in indented, 'pitted' scars. However, it's important for patients to understand that these scars are not necessarily a lifelong burden. Even if these scars seem tough, they aren't unbeatable. As physicians, at our clinic MD Skin Lab, we are equipped with a wide variety of treatment options that can significantly reduce the visibility of acne scars." -Dr. Vishaal Govan, Aesthetic Medicine Doctor.

Acne scars emerge due to the body's natural healing mechanism triggered by inflammation from acne lesions. When skin pores become congested with excess oil, accumulations of dead skin cells and bacteria can give rise to various forms of acne, including whiteheads, blackheads, papules, pustules, and cysts. While the body tries to restore these irritated areas, the healing process sometimes unfolds imperfectly, forming scars.

There are various types of acne scars; let's examine their characteristics and causes:

Atrophic Scars: These scars exhibit hollows or indentations in the skin, resulting from collagen loss during the healing phase. Within this category, three subtypes exist:

1) Ice Pick Scars: Thin and deep.
2) Boxcar Scars: Wide with sharp edges.
3) Rolling Scars: Create wavy skin texture.

Hypertrophic and Keloid Scars: These scars emerge when the body generates excess collagen during healing, resulting in thickened skin areas. While hypertrophic scars stay confined to the original acne lesion boundaries, keloid scars extend beyond the affected region. Keloid scars are more likely to develop in individuals with darker skin tones, and they often occur on areas of the body with less underlying fat, such as the chest, shoulders, and upper back.

Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH): While not technically classified as scars, PIH entails darkened skin at healed acne lesion areas. This occurs due to intensified melanin production during the inflammatory cycle.

Now that we understand the types of acne scarring let's get into the triggers.

Common Acne Scarring Triggers

Understanding the primary triggers that lead to acne scarring is essential for formulating effective preventative methods. Now, let's explore some of the principal factors that significantly contribute to the development of acne scarring.

Inflammation: When inflammatory acne lesions like cysts and papules occur, they can harm the collagen, potentially resulting in raised scars.

Picking Your Skin: Picking or popping acne worsens inflammation and promotes scarring by causing tissue damage.

Untreated Acne: Ignoring untreated acne allows inflammation to endure, increasing the chance of scarring.

Genetic Influence: Genetic factors play a role in collagen production and the body's healing process, impacting the outcome of scars.

Impact of Sun Exposure: Harmful UV rays from the sun can potentially degrade collagen and elastin, increasing the risk of scarring.

By understanding the common triggers that contribute to acne scarring, people can take proactive actions to prevent acne scarring. Consulting with a doctor at MD Skin Lab for personalized skincare routines and timely treatment are critical efforts in minimizing the risk of acne scarring and encouraging healthy skin. With that said, let's get into specific medical treatments if you suffer from acne scars. 

Medical Treatments for Acne Scars

Advances in dermatological science have led to various medical treatments that can reduce the appearance of acne scars and restore smoother, more even-toned skin. At MD Skin Lab, we offer two popular treatments to heal the skin from acne scarring.

“Microneedling and Morpheus8, radio frequency microneedling, represent two of the most popular treatment approaches to acne scarring. Microneedling harnesses the body's own natural healing process to stimulate collagen production, a cornerstone in the journey of scar reduction. Morpheus8, on the other hand, introduces the power of radiofrequency and heat energy to reach deep into the skin layers, promoting structural remodelling and a smoother skin surface. While each patient's journey may be unique, these treatments enable us to customize our approach, optimizing outcomes and guiding patients towards healthier, rejuvenated skin.” - Dr. Soreya Dhanji, Aesthetic Medicine Doctor

The Benefits of Morpheus8 for Acne Scars

Let's begin with Morpheus8, the treatment patients love at MD Skin Lab! Also known as Radio-Frequency Microneedling, this treatment is a minimally invasive procedure to improve the look of your skin, resulting in a smoother complexion with the reduced appearance of scarring. Morpheus8 is uniquely tailored to treat acne scars of all types and is suitable for every skin tone. Through its advanced technology, this minimally invasive procedure precisely targets the skin's deeper layers, utilizing radio-frequency heat energy delivered through fine needles. This process stimulates collagen and elastin production, effectively diminishing the appearance of acne scars while promoting overall skin rejuvenation.

Your journey with Morpheus8 begins with a personalized consultation with our expert physicians, Dr. Soreya Dhanji or Dr. Vishaal Govan. After a thorough assessment, a topical numbing agent is applied to ensure your comfort during the procedure. The Morpheus8 handheld device, equipped with tiny needles and RF energy, is skillfully maneuvered across the treatment area, initiating the skin's natural healing process. The result is the gradual fading of acne scars, replaced by smoother, revitalized skin.

Minimal downtime means you can swiftly resume your routine, experiencing only temporary redness, swelling, and mild discomfort. Throughout a few sessions, spaced approximately six weeks apart, clients experience a transformation as acne scars fade, revealing a smoother complexion. To get your Morpheus8 journey started, book an appointment with the physicians at MD Skin Lab.

Using Microneedling for Acne Scars

Another excellent treatment option for acne scars is Microneedling. At MD Skin Lab, we offer two microneedling options for acne scars: Microneedling with SkinPen and PRP Microneedling. Allow us to break down the two treatments.

Firstly, Microneedling with SkinPen leverages the SkinPen device, a precision tool built with tiny, sterile needles. These needles create controlled micro-injuries on the skin's surface, prompting the body's natural healing mechanisms into action. As the skin repairs itself, collagen and elastin production surge, transforming texture, firmness, and tone. The science behind Microneedling is both elegant and practical. The carefully crafted micro-injuries stimulate cellular renewal and enhance the skin's absorption of nourishing serums. Collagen fortifies the skin's structure, while elastin imparts elasticity, resulting in a revitalized, youthful appearance.

Secondly, PRP Microneedling is an excellent option to reduce the appearance of the appearance of scarring. This treatment seamlessly blends cutting-edge science with precision to rejuvenate your skin and reduce the look of acne scars. PRP Microneedling is a synergy of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) and the SkinPen microneedling device. Also known as platelet-rich plasma, this procedure utilizes your body’s platelets (regenerative cells) to rejuvenate the skin and stimulate collagen production as well as tissue repair. When paired with the controlled micro-injuries of microneedling, the magic happens! Tiny, sterile needles of the SkinPen create precise micro-channels, allowing PRP to penetrate deep within the skin, triggering skin rejuvenation. With this treatment, patients experience skin transformation as collagen rebuilds, fine lines soften, and acne scars fade.

Our skilled aestheticians at MD Skin Lab masterfully perform both of these treatments, ensuring a safe and comfortable experience. Say goodbye to acne scars and embrace a journey of skin renewal with Microneedling using the SkinPen. Book an appointment with MD Skin Lab’s aestheticians to get started with your skincare journey. 

The Differences Between Microneedling and Morpheus8

A question we often receive is, “What is the difference between Microneedling and Morpheus8?”  Morpheus8 is a type of microneedling treatment that combines traditional microneedling with radiofrequency energy to deliver more robust skin rejuvenation results. While both Morpheus8 and microneedling utilize tiny needles to puncture the skin and trigger the body's natural healing process, Morpheus8 goes a step further by delivering radiofrequency energy to the deeper layers of the skin, which can promote increased collagen production, tighten the skin, and improve overall skin texture. If you suffer from severe or deep acne scarring, Morpheus8 may be the better option for you. Meanwhile, a smaller amount of acne scars can be managed with Microneedling. To get a better idea of the best option for you, we recommend consulting with a skin specialist at MD Skin Lab. 

Are You Prepared for a Journey to Healthier Skin?

Start your skincare journey by scheduling a consultation with our skincare experts at MD Skin Lab. The team at our downtown Toronto clinic will take the time to understand your unique needs and goals to develop a personalized treatment plan tailored to your needs. At MD Skin Lab, we value your individuality and take a bespoke approach to all aesthetic treatments. We can’t wait to meet you!