- Do you know how to treat your acne scars effectively?
- Do you know that optimum treatment differs from patient to patient?
Different people and different scoring call for different action. Acne scars is a common problem for many men who suffered from severe or even moderate acne at some point in their life. It is a topic that concerns (it should be) also those who currently suffer from acne. When you have acne it is difficult to imagine yourself how “bad” you are going to look after acne is gone. It is very important that you take care of your skin in this stage though because here is where you get the scars. Pay attention and do everything you can to avoid it.
Another unfortunate thing for many people is that they cannot afford economically a scar treatment and hence are left with the scars. If you don’t have the money to treat your scars now, you should do at least a few things to help your skin heal as much as possible.
Let’s dig in .. 🙂
Myth One – Acne Scars cannot fade away completely
Have you heard this one? This myth is as common as the one below and causes despair and confusion. So first things first, your scaring may or may not be 100% heal-able. This mostly depends on three things, how severe acne you had, for how long did you have acne and how much money you have to spend for healing. Other factors also play a role, such as your skin type, your lifestyle (stress levels etc..). But mostly the three most important factors are the severity of acne, time and money, that’s it.
Now let’s assume that you belong to the group of men that has moderate or mild acne. In most cases, you won’t have any problems getting rid of your scars and you won’t need to spend lots of money.
Myth Two – Acne Scars can fade away completely
As I said, in most cases of moderate and mild acne, full healing is possible. Some people though might have deeper scars from moderate acne, in this case, total fading of the scars won’t be easy. For those of you who suffer/suffered from severe acne, you probably have deep scars. But don’t get panicked, even in these cases, the deep scars are only a fraction of the overall scars. Sometimes they might cover 10%, 5% or less.
In the cases of severe acne the possibility of complete healing varies a lot from patient to patient and if you fit this category you might need lot’s of money to spend and even then, sometimes total healing may not be possible. In any case, you should start with a good dermatologist. When I say good i mean really good. There are many reasons for this, but they are beyond the scope of this article. Just don’t be cheap, paying a little more in the beginning always saves you from trouble later on. Here you will find a pretty good catalog: www.aad.org to start with.
Myth Three – You cannot prevent acne scars while you still suffer from acne outbreaks
Have you ever thought how and when the scars are created? I bet you haven’t but don’t worry, most people don’t, including me. Solving these questions can help you prevent acne scarring. You can get a scar usually with two ways. The first is by squeezing, popping and picking at your pimples and is a quite obvious reason. The second is inflammation. Sometimes even if you leave your pimples alone they do cause scarring due to inflammation. The more inflamed* you are the more likely it is that your lesions will leave scars when they ‘re gone.
Moving to our second question is when the scars are created. Scars are the result of the healing process of the skin when damaged for whatever reason, the more the damage is, the more difficult to cope with the scars. In the case of acne, the damage is caused by inflammation, bacteria and you pick your pimples. Unfortunately, it is difficult to eliminate bacteria fast. But inflammation, touching and irritating of your skin is easier and faster to handle. A few tips to cool off inflammation a bit you will find here: High-Sugar Foods and Acne and Does Eating Greasy Food Cause Acne?. Physical exercise is another way to lower your inflammation levels in your body. By exercise, I don’t mean cross-fit per se. Smart resistance exercise can do the trick, no extremities needed.
*(I am referring to your inflamed acne lesions here)
Myth Four – Common Sense says This/or that
What can I say about this. Common sense is almost everything you watch on TV, or read in magazines, newspapers and sometimes even school! Common sense is what most people think of a topic. Common sense isn’t always right. Especially when it comes to acne, common sense sucks.
You see, common sense is not science, science searches for the truth, common senses makes a quick assumption of what seems to be right. That’s all it is, a quick guess. Next time a friend of yours gives you an advice based on common sense think twice before applying, it doesn’t mean that is right because it sounds logical. If you want advice for acne, go for someone who has done some research on the field, a doctor is a good source.
Common sense never told you that what you eat and do every day is the cause of your bad skin condition and it will never do. It also never told you that you can heal yourself just by changing your lifestyle. But it’s all true and all modern studies show that your unhealthy lifestyle is the reason you have acne and the reason to cure it is a shift in a healthy lifestyle.
That’s all you need. Before you say you have a healthy lifestyle, or that you’ve tried, think if your “healthy” lifestyle is based on common sense or obsolete/manipulated scientific studies and results. The same goes for your scars, be careful of what advises you follow.
Myth Five – There is a solution that works best
When it comes to acne scars there are many people who say you should do this and that, it works miracles! Guess what? This is Bullshit. You can’t have diagnosis online(yet), you have to go to the doctor, see your scars and tell you what the best solution is for you. The funny thing is that most people are afraid to trust their doctor, who they have chosen, but do trust random guys on the Internet that give prescriptions for acne and advises on what surgery the should do!! Are you kidding me?
Let’s close this, every patient is unique and for this every treatment is different. If you are looking what treatment you should follow for your scars, do your research if you like and then go and discuss your findings with you doctor. The only tricky part here is to choose a good doctor and I would say someone who is in touch with the new scientific findings and not stuck in the “mindset and practices of his time”.
Myth Six – Exercise has nothing to do with Scars
Think so? You are half-right, exercise doesn’t affect your scars in a straight way. But exercise has the power to improve wound healing times. This is very important because it is less likely to have complications after a surgery to remove your acne scars. Not exactly a myth I know but keep in mind that exercise can boost your healing period after a dermabrasion or any other procedure you might need. This can save you from lots of trouble.
But, by exercise, I don’t mean boxing! It is obvious that after a dermabrasion procedure your skin is very sensitive and easily irritated, you should start with very light exercise such as walking during the night or something similar that doesn’t expose you to the sun (not a gym, there is a high risk for infections with so many people around). Then as the weeks pass by and if your doctor agrees, you can go on with a more tough workout. Usually, on the second week or the third week, it is ok, still no sun though.
Myth Seven – Cosmetic Surgery for Acne Scars is the only option to remove them
No, of course not. As I said before, there are many types of patients and many types of scars. Many of them won’t even need a surgery. Some might need cosmetic surgery also, but these are cases with heavy scarring. It is also very depended on age. Some men above 40 years old do follow a cosmetic surgery after a scar removal as a lifting procedure. Two in one you could say. Keep in mind that cosmetic surgeries are not always successful, the have some degree of risk and depending on the type of intervention follow-up procedures might be needed after a few years.
If you are thinking about cosmetic surgery as a follow-up procedure to scar removal, be very very careful and know what you are doing. Know what the complications might be and what your face may look 20 or 30 years after you leave the operation room.
Myth Eight – Sleep and Sleep Hours
Last but not least is sleep. Most of the time sleep is not a topic of discussion at all. While it should be because sleep is very important, no matter if you have acne or any other health condition.
Sleep is the time for your body and your mind to rest, restore and repair. Sleep time is the time when you build muscles after the gym and process the information of the day that has passed. Good sleep, strong body, and mind, bad sleep, weak body and mind.
Since your skin is an organ, losing sleep can be very bad for those of you with acne. On top of that add that bad or inadequate sleep increase stress hormones in the body, which is very bad for your acne. Two common misconceptions about sleep are:
- 7 or 8 hours of sleep are OK. First of all, not everybody has the same needs when it comes to sleep and second, even the same person has different needs from time to time. Find what your sleep needs are and satisfy them, some people need 9 hours of rest at night, or even more. Some people do ok with 8. Where do you stand? Are you depending on the alarm clock to wake up, or do you wake up by yourself? How well your biological clock is tuned?
- I sleep after midnight but I sleep a lot, I don’t have sleep problems. Sorry, but you have serious sleep problems, what time you go to bed is equally important with a number of hours that you sleep. The sleep hours around midnight can not be replaced with hours you sleep in the morning.“Sleep” hormones are active only these night hours, if you lose them, you lose the benefits and taste harmful effects of their absence.
- Last but not least, an interesting small Ted talk just to get you excited about sleep. How to sleep
Hope you find these useful, if you agree or disagree please comment, feedback is great, even if it is not positive. 🙂
Till, next time folks!