Trauma, burns, infections, surgical incisions and acne all leave scar marks and no one can escape these. In some cases, these scars may leave a psychological and social impact. However, people with scars need to understand that a better quality of life is possible with the slew of available treatments.
Dr Jaidev Yadav N C, consultant dermatologist and assistant professor, Vydehi Medical College and Hospital says, “Scars affect normal skin in many ways and causes it to lose out on many of its functions like hair growth, sensations, sweating, colour and pliability. The only purpose that scars serve is to form a barrier to the external environment. But in return, they steal the beauty of natural skin.”
Scars result in withdrawal and depression
Experts say that a few scars may result in embarrassment especially for the young. For example, we have heard stories of a girl student being ridiculed by her classmates for a mark on her face or even facing social ostracism for the same. Dr Jaidev adds, “Acne scars are known to bring about social withdrawal, depression and low-self esteem in young people and counseling may be required in a few cases.”
He adds that a person should be taught to carry himself or herself with confidence despite such problems and in severe cases patients should also seek treatment.
Stretch marks often result from the failure of physical adaptive accommodation in skin, brought about by breakage of inbuilt elastin fibers and fibrillin in the skin. This is equivalent to the snapping of a rubber band and once it is snapped, it cannot return to its original state. “Hence after childbirth, the new mother must exercise her body and especially her abdomen muscles to bring about positive change. A few creams will have to applied based on the advice from experts,” says Dr Sudheendra, dermatologist and cosmetologist, Fortis Hospital.
Physical compression garments: Experts say that an elastic bandage is wrapped over the area as it can lower the proliferation of scars.
Pneumatic compression: This machine impedes scars from growing and also help them- heal faster.
Topical: For people who refuse to go for surgical treatment, topical treatments are advised like sun screen, moisturisers/emollients, silicone gel/ sheets, onion extracts and topical steroids
Injectables: Rarely required and are only used in the case of Hypertrophic/ Keloid scar.s These are rogue scars that have lost the ability to stop growing and suitable intralesional injections are given to treat them.
Surgical: To remove surgical scars, scar revision is done. Big scars are reduced through surgical methods and creams like Mederma Advanced Scar Gel are suggested.
Lasers: Doctors pitch for laser technique for better results and devices like the Fractional Carbon dioxide lasers have the edge of being minimally invasive with repeated but fewer treatments. They restore the skin’s colour, pliability and vitality to a greatest extent.
Scars resulting from acne, trauma, surgical incisions and stretch marks have seen better results with this outpatient procedure.
Healing scars with a good diet
Diet has a big role in the healing process. Optimal repair of wounds with minimal scarring depends on specific nutrients. Doctors refer to a variety of power foods to help with wound healing. These foods are rich sources of the nutrients essential for rebuilding tissues and include protein, zinc, iron, vitamin C and vitamin A.
Proteins are essential for rebuilding damaged skin, collagen and blood vessels. In fact, lack of protein hinders healing, while getting an adequate amount helps mend damage at an optimal rate. If you suffer a major injury and have a slow-healing wound or have had surgery, you may need more protein than normal, but that decision should be made with your health care provider. Lean meat, poultry, fish, soybeans and beans contain the most protein, followed by low-fat dairy products and eggs.
Apart from these, citrus fruits and juices that are top sources of vitamin can be added. Other good sources include strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, baked potatoes, broccoli, spinach, cabbage and brussel sprouts.