They are a cosmetic nightmare. Sometimes an embarrassment and may itch and itch.
Scars fall into three categories:
1. Keloid. These are caused by healing too fast (or aggressively), after damage (or "trauma" ) to the skin. This results in and from excessive collagen being produced. Keloid scars develop over a greater area than the original injury and are usually rubbery in their texture. The tendency to develop Keliod scars can be a family thing and mainly affects younger people with darker skin. though these scars can develop at any age. They are caused by burns or surgery but care must be taken to avoid them if you are having any piercings or laser beauty treatments. The main thing to remember about Keloid scars is not to scratch them, if at all possible, even though they can itch.
2. Acne. The main type of scarring from acne is that of secondary scarring. Long term scarring by acne can be avoided by immediate treatment of any active acne through a comprehensive cane treatment regime, as may be advised by your chosen healthcare practitioner. They result from the pimples being squeezed and pricked, where acne is severe. Apart from the pock-marked appearance of the skin, these can also produce pigmentation and hyper-pigmentation.
3. Hypertrophic. These are, like Keloid scars, made up of a gristle like substance which is connective tissue, used by the body to keep any wound together. In the main, these will fade over time. They are more of a cosmetic irritation rather than anything else. Most common in teens and young adults after burns or surgery, the scars do not go beyond the original wound though may thicken for up to six months.
Prevention, of course, is better than cure. If a scar is present then you need to limit the risk of further infection. Cleanliness is very important, not scratching itchy scars or touching acne spots with dirty hands. Limiting the exposure of any scars to the sun, using products such as scar gels and using creams or gels that have good quantities of Vitamins A,E and C.
Acne scars can be helped by using AHA cleansers to remove excess sebum production and general gunk from the skin and Vitamin A (Retinol) treatments. If the scars are really a major issue then superficial resurfacing may be the answer - dermabrasion, TCA peels and some CO2 or Fraxel laser treatments. These should only be undertaken by and after professional advice.
Keloid and Hypertrophic scars may be helped by lasers, radiotherapy or even freezing the area with liquid Nitrogen or another treatment may be with steroid injections. Silicon compression dressings may help as well or silicone gel sheets. Specifically for darker skin types, ask about microneedling for Hypertrophic scars.
There are some helpful products for dealing with scarring. These include the Kelocote range of scar gels and sprays and from microdermabrasion, see the Silk'n home use system. Various products are available on our Retinol page. You may wish to cover scars, especially acne scars with foundation or makeup. If this is the case, then a good quality mineral makeup is best and for foundation, look at the Oxygenetix acne control foundation. Do not use any foundation that is not specifically designed for acneic or oily skin as this will clog the pores and make matters very much worse. The Oxygenetix breathable foundation is designed for scars other than acne scars.
Please note that in all cases, please make sure you visit your chosen healthcare professional for detailed, specific advice.