Scars are a natural part of the healing process when our skin is damaged beyond the outermost superficial layer. There are a number of factors that determine the amount of scarring. The depth and severity, as well as the location of the injury play a major role in the scar’s characteristics. Other factors such as genetics, gender, ethnicity and age can all contribute to the scarring of your skin.
Types of Scars
There are four main types of scars:
- Atrophic scars appear pitted or depressed, i.e. acne scars and scars from chickenpox
- Contracture scars are generally caused by a burn and can go deep into muscles and nerves, sometimes impairing a person’s mobility
- Hypertrophic scars protrude above the normal skin because of collagen overproduction. They do not grow beyond the boundary of the wound.
- Keloid scars are a severe form of hypertrophic scar and can grow beyond the boundary of the wound, often making treatment difficult.
Are Stretch Marks Scars?
Stretch marks are scars that form in the dermis, the elastic middle layer of the skin that helps it keep its shape. It is believed that when the dermis is continually stretched, or stretched beyond its limits, the tissue is damaged and stretch marks form. Both men and women can get stretch marks virtually anywhere on the body. Rapid weight gain, pregnancy, rapid weight loss and extreme body building are all contributing factors to the formation of stretch marks.
Stretch Mark and Scar Treatment
While there is no non-surgical method to completely get rid of scars or stretch marks, there are ways to diminish their appearance. At Delta Laser, we offer several scar treatments depending on the type and severity of scarring. Microdermabrasion is a quick, painless way to treat superficial scars. Fraxel Laser is the industry choice for tougher scars like acne scars as well as stretch marks. Laser Genesis may also used for scars, but only for very superficial scarring. Lastly, dermal fillers are sometimes useful for select atrophic scars, as they can fill in the sunken area of skin.
Reduce the appearance of your scars or stretch marks, by contacting us to book a consultation with Dr. Marcia Fleming. She would be happy to review the scar treatment options that will produce the results you are looking for.