Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Does manual abrasion in spas work to get rid of acne scars?"
My local spa has manual dermabrasion facials and was wondering if they were worth spending money for
Thank you for your question regarding procedures to help decrease the appearance of scarring. I recommend that you speak with your dermatologist. Cosmetic procedures can certainly be pricey and a huge investment, and they range in their effectiveness and level of discomfort. Microdermabrasion and chemical peels are two cosmetic procedures that work by exfoliation. Microdermabrasion uses crystals or a diamond tip to gently exfoliate and temporarily remove the top layer of your skin. This is typically a painless, non-invasive procedure with no down time. However, the procedure is effective only with repeat use every few weeks and for very superficial acne scars. Chemical peels can similarly improve the appearance of the skin with repeat use and for superficial skin damage. Peels range from causing some degree of discomfort to a significant amount of pain, depending on the type of peel and the strength of the acid used in the peel. Some peels penetrate to such deep layers of the skin and are so painful that anesthesia is necessary. True dermabrasion, a surgical invasive procedure performed with anesthesia to manually scrape layers of the skin, is rarely performed these days because of the extreme pain and recovery time involved. Lasers are now widely used because they are better tolerated and results can be achieved more quickly. I encourage you to visit your dermatologist who can evaluate your skin and determine whether your scarring could benefit from any of these procedures.
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