In a world that reveres perfection in every form, living with scars can be quite difficult. Very often, scars are caused by accidents and can be a depressing reminder. It is not necessary to live with this memory. With a little help, most scars can be removed easily and efficiently. Most people view plastic surgery as an all cosmetic procedure used to pander to vanity. That isn’t so. Plastic surgery is a boon to people who have lived with scars that have made them shun social contact and lead reclusive lives. Why do we get scars? Scarring is actually the skin’s way of healing and is a good thing. Unfortunately some of us scar worse than others. There are a few lucky people for whom scars fade away without leaving a mark, but for most of us, scars are an ugly reminder.
Types of scars
- Keloids: When your skin heals aggressively, this is the type of scar that you could end up with. These scars not only cover the area of the wound but may extend over it, making the scar larger, darker and bulbous. Sometimes, in particularly large scars, keloids can even hamper movement.
- Contracture scars: These are caused by burns and when healing, contract tightening the skin. The area around the skin also gets wrinkled due to the stretching of the skin.
- Hypertrophic scars: These are like keloids but are not bigger than the injury.
- Acne scars: There are a variety of acne scars and the scars depend on the severity of the acne. They can range anywhere between deep pit like holes, to blackish facial blemishes, depending on the type of acne.
Procedures to remove scars
Many over the counter treatments promise to remove scars, but these work mostly on mild facial scars caused by pimples. These usually fade away over time with or without the help of topical creams. But most deep scars need more aggressive procedures. Some of the most common procedures include:
- Dermabrasion: This is basically like exfoliating your skin. The procedure peels away old skin, so that fresh healthy skin replaces it. Along with the peeled skin, surface scars can be removed. This is used mostly for superficial scars.
- Laser surgery: If the scars have penetrated several layers of skin, laser surgery could be the solution. It is painless and quick and once the skin heals, your skin will be unblemished.
- Plastic surgery: If you have very bad scarring, you may need to have plastic surgery, which may include skin grafts, where layers of healthy skin from other parts of the body are used to cover the scars. This is a more complicated procedure, but is well worth it.
Plastic surgery for scar removal
The type of surgery for scar removal would depend on the scar.
- Scars may be raised or recessed
- They could be different in color or texture from surrounding healthy tissue
- They could be particularly noticeable due to their size, shape or location.
- Your general health and age would also be considered when making a decision.
Usually, plastic surgery will be an in-patient procedure, though if you are responding well, your hospital stay won’t be too long.
Before making the decision to have plastic surgery, do some research, talk to the doctors to get all your questions answered, so that you know what the procedure is and what to expect. With the right hospital, experienced doctors and safe procedures, you can kiss your scars goodbye.