Scar Cream

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The human body is amazing in its ability to heal injuries to the skin, but when scars linger on afterward, many people find themselves searching for the best scar cream to remove the reminder. A scar is seldom pleasant to look at, and it may be itchy and uncomfortable as well.

A person can rely on time to reduce the impact and appearance of the scar, or turn to surgical or laser treatments to remove scars. However, it can take two years or more for a scar to fade naturally, and it is expensive to get rid of scars by surgical means. The judicious use of a medicinal scar cream is often the most cost-effective approach in the matter of how to get rid of scars on the face.

Types of Facial Scars

Facial scars can be classified as belonging to any one of four categories:

  • Keloid scars: When an injury doesn’t heal smoothly or cleanly, the result is often a keloid scar. Healing may be disturbed by infection, by the disruption or removal of the scab, by an adverse reaction to an antiseptic or medication, or by other means.  The scar itself is characterized by excess tissue that is thicker than the surrounding skin, and often textured or rubbery. Keloid scars are also notable for their surface area, which extends beyond the original injury site to create a scar that is actually larger than the original wound.
  • Contracture scars: Burn injuries often result in this type of scar, which pulls the skin tight and can cause disfigurement that goes beyond mere discoloration. Depending on the severity of the burn, contracture scars can affect the sub-surface nerves and muscles, as well as the skin itself.  In addition to the visible damage to the skin, contracture scars can also have the effect of warping a person’s facial expressions due to underlying muscle damage.
  • Hypertrophic scars: Like keloid scars, these scars usually form in response to an irregular or interrupted healing process.  Both types of scars are comprised of excessive collagen tissue that has not been properly or tidily laid down. Hypertrophic scars differ from their keloid cousins in the fact that they do not overgrow the boundaries of the original wound. Whereas a keloid scar may continue to overgrow its edges by expanding and adding collagen tissue, a hypertrophic scar will not exceed the surface area of the initial injury.
  • Acne scars: People who experience excessive affliction with acne will often suffer the additional indignity of extensive scarring as a result. Pimples, blackheads, whiteheads, and inflamed pustules may leave pitted or raised scars covering wide swaths of the face. This is the single type of scarring that can be prevented, if the sufferer proactively treats the causative acne.

The first step in choosing an appropriate scar creams is to identify what type of scarring is present. Different ointments may be more effective different types of scarring.

Drawbacks to Invasive Scar Removal Procedures

People who have been severely scarred often consider undertaking scar removal by invasive procedures like laser treatment, cryotherapy (using liquid nitrogen to freeze away the tissue), injection of steroids, dermabrasion, skin graft, or surgical removal of the scar. From an aesthetic point of view, facial scarring is more prominently placement than other scars, and therefore impossible to hide. Cosmetics cannot completely conceal or downplay them, so the only solution is to treat the scars themselves.

The invasive procedures listed above are tempting because they seem to offer a “quick fix.” The risk factors range from relatively low (with the least invasive procedures like steroid injection) to quite risky with procedures like skin grafts. A graft requires general anesthetic, as well as immune suppressants. The suppressants are necessary to prevent the body from rejecting the grafted skin, but they also make the patient far more vulnerable to infection or illness.

Nearly all of these treatments carry a risk of making the scarring worse, and none of them can guarantee the absolute erasure of existing scars. The one thing these treatments are guaranteed to do is to make a dent in the patient’s bank account. Because the procedures are commonly classified as “cosmetic” (meaning they are not medically necessary), insurance carriers will not usually elect to cover the costs.

Using Non-Invasive Scar Cream

The safest and least expensive treatment for most scars is the application of a medicated scar cream to enhance the body’s natural healing processes.  To maximize the effectiveness of any scar creams, the timing of its use is critical.

Healing of damaged skin can be broken down into three stages. The first stage, occurring in the hours and days following the injury, consists of an intensive process with a number of actions taking place:

  • Collagen tissues line up across the wound, preferably in a tidy parallel fashion, and pull the edges of the wound together.
  • White blood cells attack any invading micro-organisms to prevent infection.
  • Platelets help the blood clot, and a scab forms.
  • New skin is constructed beneath the scab, covering the open area where the skin was broken.

The second stage is a protracted healing stage. After the initial intensive activity of healing, a slower and more low-key process continues within the scar tissue, for approximately two years. After this second stage, the scar is essentially inactive, and is unlikely to change.

Scar Cream Application

Whatever scar cream you choose, it will be most effective during the first two stages of healing. No amount of medication can change the healing process after the healing area becomes physiologically inactive, because the healing is finished. Applying the scar cream during the healing stages, however, can result in measurable improvements in the healing process and the resulting scar.

A healing wound needs a number of substances in order to heal properly. Rather than waiting for your blood stream to deliver these items, a good scar cream will provide all the components necessary for the body to fight off infection and manufacture new skin.

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