Working on your skin can sometimes sound like major construction, and so it goes with microdermabrasion. The aim of this procedure is to "resurface" your face, but fortunately, it's not as intensive as it sounds.
While dermabrasion uses a brush to sand away a thick layer of surface skin, its less invasive cousin helps reduce or even eliminate acne scars by essentially sandblasting the outermost layer of skin cells away. A small device bombards your facial skin with tiny particles of aluminum oxide while at the same time sucking the crystals off your face. It sounds horrible but is in fact an easy and painless procedure that usually lasts around a half-hour.
Microdermabrasion has been shown to stimulate new skin production, so you won't be losing anything that won't come back. Following treatment, the skin's surface will be smoother, and any natural or acne-caused discoloration in your face will be diminished.
It's not usually a one-time procedure, and you may need a dozen weekly treatments to get the results you want (the number of treatments will vary case to case). Shallow scars are easier to treat than larger ones.
There's a chance your skin will have some redness afterward, but any discoloration should go away on its own in a day or so.
Want to read more articles on acne? Check out the links below.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
- American Academy of Dermatology. "Acne." (Aug. 30, 2009)http://www.aad.org/public/publications/pamphlets/common_acne.html
- American Academy of Dermatology. "Acne Scarring." (Aug. 30, 2009)http://www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/scarring.html
- American Academy of Dermatology. "Microdermabrasion." Oct. 8, 2008. (Sep. 1, 2009)http://www.skincarephysicians.com/agingskinnet/microdermabrasion.html
- American Academy of Dermatology. "Microdermabrasion: What to Expect Before, During, and After." Oct. 8, 2008. (Aug. 30, 2009)http://www.skincarephysicians.com/agingskinnet/microdermabrasion_expect.html
- American Academy of Dermatology. "What is Acne?" (Aug. 30, 2009)http://www.skincarephysicians.com/acnenet/acne.html
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- Bleimes, Ashley. "The heat is on new acne fighters." USA Today. Feb. 11, 2007. http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2007-02-11-acne-fighters_x.htm
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- Harper, Julie C, MD.; Fulton Jr., James, MD, PH.D. "Acne Vulgaris." July 15, 2008. (Aug. 30, 2009) http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1069804-overview
- Jacono, Andrew. "Skin Resurfacing, Carbon Dioxide Laser." Sep. 27, 2006. (Aug. 29, 2009) http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1296806-overview
- Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. "Acne treatments: Emerging therapies for clearer skin." Apr. 19, 2008. (Aug. 31, 2009)http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/acne-treatments/SN00038
- New Zealand Dermatological Society Incorporated. "Honey for wound care." 2005. (Aug. 31, 2009) http://docs.google.com/gview?a=v&q=cache%3A9FsjghHNTb0J%3Adermnetnz.org%2Ftreatments%2Fpdf%2Fhoneyforwoundcare-dermnetnz.pdf+honey+antibacterial+medline&hl=en&gl=us&pli=1
- New Zealand Dermatological Society Incorporated. "Lasers, lights and acne." Aug. 16, 2009. (Sep. 1, 2009)http://dermnetnz.org/procedures/acne-laser.html
- Radiancy. "LHE Science." (Sep. 2, 2009)http://www.radiancy.com/USA/lheacne.htm
- Tkac, Deborah. The Doctors Book of Home Remedies. Rodale, 1994. 087596270X, 9780875962702. http://www.mothernature.com/Library/bookshelf/Books/47/2.cfm
- Woodward, Angela. "Cell Salt Therapy." Volume 1 of the Gale Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine, The Gale Group, Inc., 2005. ISBN 0787674249, 9780787674243.http://www.healthline.com/galecontent/cell-salt-therapy
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