Acne scars: Know the types and potential treatment

Active acne can be frustrating, but what is even more frustrating are acne scars. Acne scars are formed when a breakout penetrates the skin deeply and damages the tissues beneath it.

Before attempting scar treatment, it is important to know the type of scar. Different types respond differently to treatment, and some treatments are better suited for certain types.

Types of acne 

Acne can be mild, moderate, or severe. In severe cases, acne can cause painful, pus-filled bumps called nodules or cysts under the surface of the skin.

Moderate acne causes red bumps and pus-filled pimples. Mild acne, with or without a few red bumps or pustules, causes less irritating pimples or pimples.

In most cases, the bright red or brown spots left behind when acne heals will fade on their own over time. However, severe acne, especially cystic acne, can leave permanent scars as it heals.

Pinching or squeezing pimples, rather than treating or curing them, is more likely to leave permanent scars.

Some people have no acne scars. However, most people have dealt with at least some acne scars at some point in their lives.

Types of acne scars

types of acne scars

Acne scars vary in appearance from shallow mottled pits, sometimes called rolling scars, to deep, narrow pits. These pits are the color of your skin, but they can also be darker or pink.

The different types of acne scars are:

1.Atrophic scars-Atrophic scars are flat, shallow depressions that heal under the top layer of skin. These scars are often caused by severe cystic acne. But other types of acne can also cause them. The appearance of atrophic acne scars depends on the history of acne. There are three types of atrophic scars:

a)Boxcar Scars

b)Icepick Scars

c)Rolling Scars

2.Hypertrophic or raised acne scars-These scars are most common with acne on the chest and back. They lie above the surface of the surrounding skin and are caused by excess collagen during healing.

The discoloration that remains after the pimple is gone is not a scar. Purple, red, or brown spots will go away on their own after a few months.

It is important to see a dermatologist or doctor before starting treatment for acne scars. They can help determine the best way to make scars less noticeable, and also help ensure that marks on the skin are actually scars and not another condition.

What is laser treatment?

laser treatment

Laser acne scar treatment aims to minimize the appearance of scarring from old acne breakouts.95% of people with acne still have scarring.

Laser treatment for acne scars uses light to destroy the scar tissue on the top layer of the skin. At the same time, the treatment encourages the growth of new healthy skin cells to replace scar tissue.

While this treatment won’t completely remove acne scars, it can make them less visible and less painful. If you have active acne, dark skin, or very wrinkled skin, this treatment may not be suitable for you. Only a dermatologist can determine if laser acne scar treatment is the right treatment for you.

Cost of treatment

The cost of laser treatment for acne scars is not covered by insurance. There are various factors which decide the cost of your treatment like:

1.the number of scars you’re treating

2.the size of the area being targeted for treatment

3.the number of treatments you’ll need

4.the experience level of your provider

Working of laser treatment

Laser treatment for acne scars works in two different ways.

First, the heat from the laser removes the top layer of skin where the scar is formed. As the top layer of this scar peels off, the skin becomes smoother and the scar less visible.

Once scar tissue is destroyed, the laser’s heat and light also encourage the growth of new, healthy skin cells. The heat from the laser draws blood flow to the area and targets the blood vessels in the scar, thus reducing inflammation. All of this makes scars less raised, less red, and smaller looking.It also helps the skin heal faster.

Types of procedures in laser treatment

Common types of lasers used for acne scars include erbium YAG lasers, carbon dioxide lasers, and pulsed dye lasers. Each of these devices works in a specific way to target your scar type.

Ablative laser resurfacing

Ablative resurfacing uses an erbium YAG or carbon dioxide CO2 laser. This type of laser treatment aims to remove all the top layers of skin in the scarred area. It takes about 3 to 10 days for the redness from the laser to subside.

Non-ablative laser resurfacing

Laser treatment for this type of acne scarring uses an infrared laser. The heat from these types of lasers is said to stimulate collagen production and encourage new cell growth to replace damaged scar tissue.

Fractionated laser treatment

A fractional laser aims to stimulate the tissue under the scar to remove the dark, pigmented cells beneath the top layer of skin. Boxcar and ice pick scars may respond well to this type of laser.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1.How does laser therapy work?

Lasers use precise light energy to boost skin cell production. New skin cells replace scar tissue, thinning the scar layer by layer.

Q2.What happens during laser scar removal treatment?

Apply a cooling cream to the treatment area. A precise laser beam is then focused on that area. Treatment time is just minutes

Q3.Are there any side effects to laser scar removal?

Temporary redness and swelling may occur.


Laser treatment for acne scars is one of the best treatments to get rid of them. The side-effects are also temporary. It is a very short treatment and also there are no restrictions.


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