Do you want to know what causes acne scars? If so, you will need to learn a little about your skin. Once acne forms, there is scarring already present within the deep layers of the skin where you cannot see it. Follicles become blocked and the results are pimples that are typically red, seem enormous and are considered extremely unsightly, especially to teenagers. The first reaction when a pimple develops is to squeeze it. This is one of the worst things you can do. This causes a scar to appear on the outer layer of skin – the part that we can see.
When a follicle becomes blocked with dead skin cells, excess oil and bacteria causing acne, the middle layer of skin or the dermis builds up with debris. The dermis is the skin just below the epidermis, which is the outer layer of skin. Since the dermis is where hair follicles, oil glands, sweat glands and nerve endings are located, this is an area that is prime for buildup when a follicle becomes blocked. This causes the body to send white blood cells and plasma to the area that is blocked.
The plasma and white blood cells cause the inflammation as a way of protecting the tissue around the area that is blocked. This inflammation is the real cause of acne scars. Since the pimple is trying to heal itself, but the inflammation causes too much collagen to be deposited, a scar forms in the dermis. The deeper the breakout, the longer it will take to heal and this increases the likelihood of scarring. This is another reason that you should not squeeze pimples. It prolongs the time it takes for them to heal.
The immune system, which is the body’s protection against everything from foreign substances to illness, is also responsible for the damage caused to skin. This is one of the reasons squeezing pimples can cause more damage. This will cause more inflammation in addition to what is sent to protect the surrounding tissue. Squeezing a pimple causes bacteria to be leaked into surrounding tissue, triggering more inflammation.
There are Two Basic Types of Scars
There are basically two types of scarring due to acne. When damage is deep, often some of the support is lost due to the inflammation and this will form deep scarring, which is shown on the surface of the skin as a hollow scar. This is where the underlying layer of skin used to be and is also known as a crater.
Sometimes the body will attempt to fill in this area with extra collagen and a raised scar appears. This type is often called hypertrophic scarring. Boxcar scars are a type of hypertrophic scarring. They are usually round or oval and the depressions have sharp upright edges. They are not tapered like ice pick scars.
Rolling scars are a type caused by excess tissue. The skin will acquire a rolling look caused by it becoming attached to the subcutaneous tissue, which is below the dermis and epidermis.
The more common type is atrophic scars, which occur when tissue is lost. They are also called boxcar scars and ice pick scars. They are small and usually have an edge that is somewhat jagged, giving the appearance of being stabbed with an ice pick. They can be either deep or shallow and soft or rough to the touch. They may resemble chicken pox scars.
Furthermore, it has been determined that some people are more prone to developing acne scars than others. Heredity may come into play. If a family history of acne and the associated scarring is present, the risk is higher. Hormones are another factor. Pregnant women and teenagers are considered to have a higher risk of developing acne and scars. Using cosmetics can trigger acne since they hold the oil and dirt inside the follicles.
There are several natural ways to minimize breakouts, thus decreasing the chance of scarring. Drinking plenty of water is one way of keeping skin healthy. If you are prone to acne, finding a solution that will help control breakouts will be beneficial. This will result in less scarring and keep your skin smooth and feeling great.