Often, people use the terms acne marks and acne scars interchangeably. However, there’s a difference between acne scars and acne marks. Fundamentally, acne marks are flat, brown, or red. They can be removed by applying some creams or they tend to go away on their own, naturally. On the other hand, acne scars lead to skin irregularities. They are raised or indented and often stay with the person forever. However, it is best to understand a few more aspects to the acne marks vs. acne scars comparison. Let’s explore some.
Acne Marks Vs. Acne Scars – Causes
Also called dark spots, acne marks are a result of inflammation. Whenever the skin senses an attack, it sends white blood cells to the bloodstream. This natural action increases blood flow to the damaged area and turns it red. However, white blood cells have company. They come with melanocytes that produce melanin and darken the skin.
Acne scars occur when the body’s healing mechanism does not respond appropriately to skin inflammation. Picking acne lesions seals the damaged blood vessels with platelets. This action stops bleeding. The platelets attach to collagen and release some healing substances.
When you stop bleeding, the contracted blood vessels relax and cause redness. The action can trigger melanin production as well. Later, the body creates new blood vessels and produces new collagen to heal the skin.
However, when acne scars heal naturally, the body releases Matrix Metalloproteinases(MMPs). It degrades the old collagen Tissue Inhibitors of Metalloproteinases(TIMPs) to control them until the natural mechanism is completed. However, this abrupt healing of the skin around the acne leads to the formation of different types of acne scars such as ice pick, rolling, and hypertrophic scars.
Acne Scars and Acne Marks Treatment
Let’s look at the acne marks treatment first. Ideally, nature treats acne marks on its own. But you have many treatment options to expedite the acne marks treatment process. Nevertheless, these treatments require diagnosis and a dermatologist’s prescription.
Chemical Peels:Chemical peels involve a high concentration of exfoliating hydroxy acids to remove dead skin cells to bring out the more even-toned skin underneath.
Azelaic Acid: Azelaic acid prevent tyrosinase (an enzyme in melanin production) and lowers inflammation.
Vitamin C: Vitamin C is part of conventional skin treatment. It helps lighten dark spots and lighten skin color as well.
Hydroquinone: Hydroquinone helps prevent melanin production. However, it can prove harsh on your skin, depending on its response.
Retinol: Retinol accelerates cellular turnover. Additionally, it promotes collagen and eliminates free radicals.
Microneedling: It involves using tiny needles to result in controlled trauma to the skin. The process fosters healing and neocollagenesis production.
Ablative Lasers: Ablative lasers are effective. However, a numbing cream would be applied in order to prevent pain caused during the procedure.
Vascular Laser Treatment: This acne scars laser treatment involves using focused light beams to trigger collagen production and resurface a particular area without touching the tissues around.
CROSS: CROSS stands for Chemical Reconstruction of Skin Scars and uses high trichloroacetic acid (TCA) concentrations. It destroys the scar’s outer wall and promotes remodeling and resurfacing.
We hope you got a fair understanding of the difference between acne scars and acne marks. Although acne scars and acne marks result from inflammation, the treatment for both differs. Instead of worrying about them or picking them, you must consult dermatologists like Clear Skin. We are experts in acne scars and acne marks treatment. Our dermatologists prescribe the correct treatment and help treat acne based on the diagnosis.