7 Tips for Caring for a Scar
Scars can form on areas of the body for a variety of reasons such as a surgery or something as simple as a skinned knee. As the body works to repair itself, it occasionally results in scarring. The sooner you can try to heal the injury, the better chance you have of a scar being less visible. These tips from the dermatologists at Dermatology & Mohs Surgery Institute can help you heal and disguise current scars you have or any new ones you may get.
How to Care for a Scar
Caring for a Wound
Whether a wound has appeared because of a surgery or an injury, it is important to always keep the wound and the area surrounding the wound as clean as possible. This helps to prevent infection. If the wound is from an injury, gently remove any debris from the area first. After it’s cleaned out, wash the area with soap and water to keep the germs out. To help the skin heal properly and hopefully with minimal scarring, use petroleum jelly to keep the wound moist. This prevents a scab from forming. Next, cover the wound with a bandage. A bandage keeps the wound from becoming infected. Be sure to change the bandage daily so you can continue to clean the wound. Once the wound heals there may be apparent scarring. The following tips will help you care for your scar after the initial wound.
Caring for Scars
After a wound has completely healed, scarring may be present. Taking care of your scars is just as important as taking care of the original wound. One tip for taking care of scars is to use a topical ointment. Cocoa butter cream and Vaseline are most often used to help reduce the appearance of scars. Applying the ointment daily will help heal scars but will not make them invisible. Another tip for caring for your scars includes surgery. Surgery will not eliminate the scar but can change its shape or make it less noticeable. Keep in mind that not everyone with scars will qualify for surgery. Additionally, steroid injections may be used to soften the appearance of scars. It may even help reduce the size of the scar and ease itchiness scars often cause. Another option is dermabrasion. Dermabrasion removes the surface of the skin to blend in the irregularities of your scar. Like dermabrasion, laser resurfacing is a similar procedure. It removes less skin than dermabrasion but provides similar results. If you prefer not to go “under the knife” microneedling may be an option for you. Small holes are made into the scar to increase collagen production which will help the scar reduce in appearance. Lastly, cryosurgery can be helpful. In this procedure, the scar is frozen and will reduce itchiness, hardness, and any discoloration. All options for caring for your scars should be examined until you find one or more that you are comfortable with.
Those with scarring can reach out to the dermatologists at Dermatology & Mohs Surgery Institute for clarification on these tips or with any questions they may have about taking care of scars. If you are located in Bloomington, Illinois or the surrounding area, complete this form to get in touch with a dermatologist.