For reasons unknown, follicles of the skin overproduce cells sometimes resulting in them becoming blocked. Each follicle contains a hair and an oil gland which produces sebum (oil). Dirt and bacteria start to build up resulting in plugs or comedones.
- If the comedone is black, it is known as a blackhead.
- If it is white, it is known as a whitehead.
- Inflammatory acne can occur if a break occurs in the wall of the follicle.
- Pimples, papules and cysts can be formed. This can occur spontaneously or by picking or touching the skin
- Azelaic acid
- Oral antibiotics
- Oral contraceptives
- Obagi Clenziderm system
However these are not effective once acne scarring has occurred
Types of ACNE
Ice pick scars
These are a very common type of acne scarring. They give the appearance of the skin being picked with ice. They are usually less than 2mm across
These are caused by damage under the surface of the skin. They are usually wide and shallow giving a wave like appearance
These may be shallow or deep and are usually found on the cheeks or the temples. Sometimes they resemble chicken pox scars as they tend to be angular with sharp vertical edges
Treatments of Scarring
Medium strength chemical
A chemical peel reacts with the very top layer of the skin causing it to come away, revealing a healthier, smoother and a blemish free complexion underneath. As the skin heals, new cells are made and there is greater collagen production resulting in a youthful and rejuvenated look. TCA peels (trichloroacetic acid) of 20-30% can be used for full face resurfacing or to improve acne ice pick and box scars. On combining this with a dermaroller treatment results in even greater cell growth and reorganisation of the skin, leading to healthier skin layers.
Obagi Blue peel
A low dose of the chemical trichloroacetic acid (TCA) mixed with a special blue base is tailored to your skin’s specific needs by controlling the depth of the peel and the number of coats. This removes thin layers of aged skin and damaged skin from the face and other parts of the body. It is a simple procedure lasting around 20 minutes. The skin then starts to peel within 2 to 3 days and can last up to 10 days. Not only is this peel highly effective in removing acne scars, after the skin has finished peeling a dramatic improvement in the complexion of the skin will be noticed and will continue to improve over 4 to 6 weeks. It can be repeated every 6 to 8 weeks until the desired goals are reached.
A fine needle is used to inject filler into the atrophic scar to lift the depression. Many types of fillers can be used and are not usually permanent. The procedure is usually painless as local anaesthetic is applied in advance
Restylane Vital and Restylane vital light are based on hyaluronic acid and are injected deep into the dermis of the skin. It restores hydrobalance of the skin, plumps up acne scarring, improves elasticity and structure. Usually 4 treatments are needed every four weeks. Full results are usually obtained after all the sessions are completed.
The medical dermaroller uses a special micro needling process to stimulate the production of the body’s own collagen. The new collagen fibres thicken the skin and fill atrophic scars.
Obagi Nu-derm system
The Nu-Derm System is an anti-ageing therapy specially formulated to penetrate below the skin’s surface to transform skin cell functions at the cellular level and correct the damage within, revealing healthy, younger-looking skin.