Some people think that acne only occurs during puberty. The truth is that this cosmetic condition can affect men and women well into their 30s, 40s, and even 50s. As someone dealing with acne, you know that it can be difficult to treat. What’s worse, you may be left with noticeable scarring after your blemishes finally clear up.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), acne is the most common skin disorder affecting Americans today. The AAD estimates that 40 to 50 million Americans suffer from this condition at any given time, with nearly 85% of all Americans suffering from acne at one point in their lives. Of these, the AAD estimates that 40% will develop acne scars that could require treatments from a dermatologist.
At JUVA Skin & Laser Center, we know that acne and acne scars can be incredibly frustrating. They can seem resistant to every at-home and prescription treatment. You shouldn’t have to deal with low self-esteem and self-confidence caused by these marks. You deserve clear, even, and healthy skin.
We offer a variety of treatments to help you improve the appearance of your skin. If you are struggling with acne or acne scars, please call 212-688-5882 today to schedule a consultation with our experienced dermatologists. We happily welcome patients from Manhattan, Woodside, NYC, and worldwide.
- What is Active Acne?
- What Causes Acne?
- How Does Acne Become a Scar?
- Types of Acne Scars
- Some Ways to Manage Acne at Home
- JUVA’s Groundbreaking Acne Research using Fractora
- Photodynamic Therapy
- Laser Acne Treatments
- Fillers for Atrophic Acne Scars
- Chemical Peels
- Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP)
- Acne and Emotional Health
- Schedule Your Manhattan or Woodside Acne Treatment
What is Active Acne?
Active acne can occur on the face, back, chest, neck, shoulders, and other areas of the body. This skin condition is characterized by inflamed or infected pores. Keep in mind that active acne is different from hyperpigmentation or scarring that can appear when your blemishes fade.
The most common types of acne include:
- Whiteheads: These are small blemishes with a white appearance.
- Blackheads: These marks are characterized by the appearance of tiny black dots.
- Papules: This term describes the stage after a whitehead, where there is likely inflammation but no visible white area on the blemish.
- Pustules: This form of acne may be painful to the touch and tempting to pop, but you should avoid any squeezing action that could leave you with a scar. Many people refer to this type of acne as pimples.
- Nodules and cysts: These are more severe forms of acne and have the potential to damage your skin. Nodules and cysts are often deep and painful.
It’s possible to have multiple types of active acne at once. That’s why it’s important to work with our dermatologists to determine your acne type. From there, they can match you with the appropriate treatments. A treatment that banishes blackheads may not be suitable for tackling deep, cystic acne.
What Causes Acne?
Acne occurs when a pore in your skin becomes clogged. Typically, this clog starts with dead skin cells. Instead of rising to the surface of the skin and falling away, some cells come in contact with a natural facial oil known as sebum. These oily skin cells may stick together and become trapped in the pore, leading to the formation of acne.
Acne can become redder and more inflamed when bacteria are involved. Certain bacteria on the surface of your skin can get trapped inside a clogged pore and multiply rapidly. Eventually, the bacteria can create a deep, painful acne cyst. Unfortunately, antibiotics and over the counter medicines may not always be effective when it comes to treating stubborn acne.
How Does Acne Become a Scar?
Not all acne breakouts lead to scarring. However, when a breakout is particularly deep or inflamed, it can damage the surrounding skin. As the blemish fades, your body attempts to fix the damage.
Unfortunately, your body may not repair the damage perfectly. A scar will form if too much or too little collagen is produced during the healing process.
You may be prone to scarring if you:
- Have inflammatory acne
- Postpone acne treatments
- Pick or squeeze your blemishes
- Have a genetic predisposition
The longer that you have inflamed, red, and irritated blemishes, the more likely you are to experience scarring. You can help prevent acne scars by pursuing an effective professional acne treatment as soon as possible. Unfortunately, it’s possible to scar in spite of your best efforts to protect your skin.
Types of Acne Scars
There are many different types of acne scars. Among the most common are:
- Rolling scars: These marks form rolling depressions across the skin that sometimes resemble waves. A kind of pitted acne scar, rolling scars become more apparent with age as collagen diminishes and the skin loses its elasticity and fullness.
- Boxcar scars: Like rolling scars, boxcar scars are depressions in the skin. However, this type of atrophic acne scar has steep, clearly defined edges.
- Icepick scars: Another type of pitted acne scar, icepick scars are narrow and deep. They typically resemble a large, empty pore.
- Keloid scars: These marks are raised acne scars that are firm and often appear rubbery. They are less common than depressed scars, but may result from severe acne, genetics, or secondary infection.
- Post-inflammatory hypo- and hyper-pigmentation: Spotting or blotching of the skin may seem unrelated to acne, but pigmentation irregularities can be caused by blemishes both early and later in life. These marks may appear lighter or darker than the surrounding skin as a result of melanin production during healing.
- Post-inflammatory erythema: A condition marked by persistent redness, erythema occurs when capillaries near the skin’s surface become permanently damaged or enlarged.
Each type of acne scar responds better to specific treatments. During your visit with our New York dermatologists, we will carefully assess your scarring and help you choose the option or combination of options that will produce the smooth and attractive skin you desire.
Some Ways to Manage Acne at Home
There are several habits and products that you can incorporate into your at home acne routine. Sometimes, changing a few things is enough to improve your acne. However, if you aren’t seeing results or if you pimples are turning into scars, it’s time to see our dermatologists.
Try the following skin care tips to help manage acne at home:
- Don’t over-wash your skin: It’s tempting to wash your skin frequently when you’re dealing with acne. However, washing more than twice a day can do more harm than good. Over-washing can lead to irritation and new breakouts. Though you may think striping all the oil from your face is the answer, you need some sebum on your face to prevent dryness and protect your skin barrier.
- Stick to a treatment: Have you fallen into the trap of switching to a new cleanser or spot treatment, using it for a few days without seeing results, and then ditching it for a different product? Changing up your skin care routine so frequently fails to give any product enough time to work. Plus, using so many different products on your skin can cause irritation.
- Use non-comedogenic products: Some makeup, skin, and hair products can cause breakouts. Try looking for products that are labeled “non-comedogenic,” which means they won’t clog your pores.
JUVA’s Groundbreaking Acne Research using Fractora
Microneedling is an effective treatment on its own. But Fractora takes microneedling further by combining it with fractionated radiofrequency energy. The result is an effective double-duty treatment with zero downtime. Fractora improves acne and acne scars through the production of collagen, elastin, and new skin cells.
Dr. Katz recently conducted a clinical research study in which 69% of subjects showed significant improvement in acne flare-ups and scarring. Our patients saw an overall improvement in their skin with 3 treatments every 3-4 weeks within a 6-month period. Dr. Katz is proud to announce the success of this clinical study and this treatment is now available at Juva Skin and Laser Center in New York.
Photodynamic therapy can improve a wide range of acne concerns. The first step is to coat the skin with a medication called Levulan® (aminolevulinic acid HCl) that is absorbed by your oil glands and skin bacteria. The drug is then activated using a gentle laser to effectively kill acne-causing bacteria and shrink the size of your oil glands.
The treatment is painless and the results are long-lasting. To experience the best results, the treatment should be performed 5-6 times at two-week intervals. Your skin will temporarily be more sensitive to the sun after a session, so you will need to wear a sunscreen for several days after a photodynamic therapy session.
Watch stories of two patients who have dealt with adult acne. Dr. Katz uses photodynamic therapy to provide long-lasting results for these patients.
Laser Acne Treatments
Laser acne treatments offer a safe, effective, and painless way to reduce acne and acne scars. At JUVA, we offer state-of-the-art options such as:
- LightPodNeo by Aerolase: This laser penetrates both the outer and inner layers of your skin to destroy the bacteria and other dermal infections that can cause acne. The heat of the laser is specifically targeted to the glands where acne bacteria thrive in order to destroy the bacteria before acne forms. The laser light is targeted and gentle enough to leave the surrounding skin tissue unharmed
- PicoSure Laser: The PicoSure laser is FDA-approved for the treatment of acne scars and dark spots. It works by aiming short bursts of laser energy into your inner and outer tissues. This revolutionary treatment helps to eliminate red spots, dark spots, and scarring. PicoSure treatments are safe and painless. Plus, they help cleanse the pores and encourage healthy skin through the production of collagen and elastin.
- Fractional CO2 Laser: Fractional CO2 lasers excel at resurfacing the skin. This treatment removes damaged and dull layers of skin tissue, leaving the surrounding skin intact to aid in the healing process. After a treatment, your skin will begin to produce healthy new cells. This process can dramatically improve the appearance of acne scars.
Fillers for Atrophic Acne Scars
Injectable dermal fillers can help minimize the appearance of depressed acne scars. These products work by adding beneficial volume below the surface of the skin. When carefully placed under an atrophic acne scar, fillers can lift the divot and help it appear more even with the surrounding skin.
At JUVA, we tend to use Bellafill to improve acne scars. This revolutionary filler provides immediate results that can last up to five years without repeat treatments!
Chemical peels are a powerful form of chemical exfoliation that can treat acne and acne scars. This popular medispa service involves applying a special solution to the skin that sloughs away dead skin cells. Superficial, or “light-duty,” chemical peels are often ideal for acne. Despite the name, many chemical peels don’t actually cause the skin to peel, meaning there is little to no downtime.
In addition to mild peels, other options can be tailored to meet your unique needs. For example, spot peels can significantly improve acne scars. These peels use a special, deeply-penetrating formula. In some cases, a stronger peel may also be appropriate.
Acne and Emotional Health
Acne doesn’t just affect your appearance; it can take a toll on your emotional wellbeing. Many patients with acne or acne scars report feeling self-conscious, unattractive, or embarrassed. If you suffer from acne, you may feel like you can’t leave the house or see your friends without applying makeup or covering up.
Studies have found that people with acne tend to suffer from:
- Poor self-image
- Feelings of isolation
- A decreased quality of life
If you suffer from stubborn acne and acne scars that don’t respond to your skin care routine or antibiotics, contact our team. The longer you have to deal with acne and scarring, the more likely it is that these concerns will cause you emotional distress. Our world-class dermatologists would love to meet with you and explain the ideal treatment or treatments for your situation.
Schedule Your Manhattan or Woodside Acne Treatment
Are you ready to put acne and acne scarring behind you? There’s no better time than now to start your journey to clear skin.
Schedule a skin consultation with our sought after dermatologists by calling 212-688-5882 or filling out our contact form. We happily work with patients from Manhattan, Woodside, NYC, and around the world.