Scarring is a physical phenomenon, but it can carry a heavy emotional toll as well. Many people view their scars as unsightly, and they may also trigger reminders of traumatic events. This can cause depression, anxiety and feelings of shame.
For these reasons and others, many people choose to have their scars removed. Luckily, there are effective treatments for doing so.
Here, we’ll cover everything you need to know about using a laser for scar removal, including the different types of lasers that can be used, the benefits of laser treatment for scars and what to expect during your laser scar removal appointment.
Scarring is a natural part of your body’s healing process. When your skin has been wounded in some way, your skin tissue breaks, releasing collagen.
As the wound heals, collagen continues to build at the site of the wound, creating new, healthy skin cells and strengthening the wound.
Over a few months, blood supply to the wound continues to increase, and the scar may become increasingly visible, raised and lumpy.
Unless removed, scarring is typically permanent. Any natural reduction in the appearance of scarring will occur within the first two years of wound healing.
What Causes Scars?
It is well-documented that scars can be caused by a multitude of factors, including:
- Tissue inflammation
For a scar to form, the damage typically has to reach the deep, inner layers of your skin.
Types of Scars
Depending on the type of wound and how it heals, there are a few different types of scars that may form, including the following.
This is the type of scar we typically picture when thinking about the appearance of scars. Fine-line scars often occur from a cut and heal as a raised-line scar that may gradually fade or flatten over about two years, leaving behind a visible line or mark.
Keloid scars occur when there is an overabundance of tissue growth at the site of a wound that continues to grow even after the wound has healed. Keloid scars are characterized by:
- Scarring that is raised well above your skin
- A pink or red appearance
- Pain and itchiness
Similar to a keloid scar, hypertrophic scars form due to overproduction of collagen at the wound site. This type of scar, however, does not grow beyond the original wound and may continue to condense for up to six months.
Pitted scars are typically caused by acne or illnesses, such as chicken pox. This type of scar dips into the skin, leaving a sunken or pitted appearance.
Typically caused by burns, scar contractures occur when the skin shrinks due to a wound, resulting in tightness and movement restriction.
Laser Scar Removal: How It Works
Laser scar removal is the process of utilizing laser treatments to stimulate the production of new collagen and elastin in the affected area. This promotes the growth of newer, smoother skin.
Depending on your scar’s location, some scars can restrict certain bodily movements due to their tendency to be inflexible. Scars can also lead to a lack of self-confidence, avoidant behaviors and social isolation.
Using a laser for scar removal can offer a solution to both the physical and emotional concerns associated with scarring by reducing their appearance.
Latest Scar Removal Treatment Methods
There are multiple types of laser treatments for scars, each bringing its own set of pros and cons. Here’s a brief overview of the latest laser scar removal treatment methods available.
Fractional Laser Treatment- Clearlift 1064, DyeVL Photofacial, Opus RF Plasma
How It Works
Fractional laser treatment for scars works by breaking up the energy from a laser to treat a small portion of your skin. By treating only a fraction of your skin at a time, this treatment type helps to reduce your risk for side effects and enables quicker healing.
Fractional lasers may be ablative or non-ablative, which means they can pass through your skin with or without removing its outer layers. At Colair Beauty Lounge & Med Spa, we use the latest non-ablative laser technology to reduce downtime that can be associated with other laser treatments.
To achieve optimal results, we recommend several laser treatments for scar removal over the span of a few weeks. You should expect to see:
- A reduction in the appearance of your scars
- Improved skin tone and texture
- Increased collagen production
Fraxel Laser Treatment
Fraxel laser treatment is a non-ablative laser treatment option that stimulates collagen production to result in the appearance of newer, healthier and smoother skin.
How It Works
This type of laser works by producing a wound healing response while avoiding injuries to the surface of your skin. As with other laser skin treatments, you may experience minor side effects, such as:
Fraxel laser treatments should be repeated over the span of a few weeks for the best results. You should notice a gradual reduction in your scars as you continue your treatment.
For a full recovery, one to three days is expected.
A certified and experienced laser technician at Colair will schedule a free consultation with you to determine the best laser treatment method for your skin.
Benefits of Laser Scar Removal
There are many benefits to using a laser for scar removal. Our clients often experience the following after their recommended treatment regimen.
Reduced Scar Appearance
The number one benefit to laser scar removal is the reduction in scar appearance. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that laser treatment is not a permanent solution to scar removal. Laser treatments should be continued in order to maintain results.
Increase in Self-confidence
Our job at Colair is to leave you feeling your best. We will work with you to achieve your desired results so that you no longer worry about yourself or others taking note of your scarring.
Decreased Depression and Anxiety
With an increase in self-confidence, you can also expect to see a reduction in depression and anxiety associated with your scarring and self appearance.
Preparing for Your Laser Scar Removal Appointment
When considering laser scar removal treatment, here are a few things you should keep in mind in preparation for your procedure.
Schedule a Consultation
The first thing to consider when planning for laser scar removal is to schedule a consultation with an experienced and reputable laser scar removal technician. It’s important that your laser specialist has the necessary credentials and expertise needed to provide you with the best results.
Following your free consultation with a Colair scar removal technician, you should follow through with any pre-treatment plans discussed at your consultation. Some common pre-treatment care instructions include:
- Avoiding excessive sun exposure prior to your treatment
- Staying hydrated
- Refraining from using any harsh cleansers on the affected area of skin
- Avoiding the use of retinoids on the affected area
Be sure to discuss with your technician any additional pre-treatment instructions or concerns that you may have prior to your treatment.
Following your laser scar removal treatment, you should carefully follow your technician’s post-treatment care instructions. Post treatment depends on the device and technology used to treat your scar. Some common laser scar removal follow-up instructions include:
- Properly cleaning the treated area as directed by your provider
- Protecting the treated area from too much sun exposure
- Applying any ointments or moisturizers as directed by your provider
- Refraining from using any harsh cleansers on the treated area
- Avoiding intense physical activity
Everyone’s healing process is different, so be sure to discuss any concerns or questions you have with your treatment provider.
Schedule Your Laser Scar Removal
With an experienced and well-trained provider, laser scar removal is an extremely safe, effective and virtually painless procedure. At Colair Beauty Lounge and Med Spa, we offer state-of-the-art laser technology, reputable providers and exceptional results.
Schedule a free consultation now with a licensed Colair laser professional in Gilbert, AZ.