Chickenpox is a virus that is extremely infectious. Most individuals will experience it once during their lifetime, usually as a kid. This single episode, including chickenpox scars, can cause lasting effects.
When an individual picks or scratches at the rash, chickenpox scars are more likely to develop. For certain individuals, the scars can be bothersome, especially if they are on noticeable parts of the body, such as the face.
It takes some time and patience to heal chickenpox wounds, but there are many over-the-counter (OTC) medications and medical procedures that could help minimize them.
Chickenpox scar removal or reduction
The severity of chickenpox scars can be minimized by a variety of home remedies and medical treatments.
For chickenpox scar removal, some individuals recommend natural skin products. While many of these products may be beneficial overall for skin health, it is common for producers to make bold claims about their efficacy.
Before using a natural product for scar removal, it is best to speak to a doctor.
Natural products that people may try using to remove chickenpox scars include:
- aloe vera
- cocoa butter
- argan oil
- olive oil
- coconut oil
- jojoba oil
- shea butter
- lemon juice
- baking soda
These ingredients can help to keep the skin healthy or encourage the treatment of scars, but there is little research to verify that they are successful.
The capacity of the following ingredients to remove scars has, however, been evaluated by researchers:
Their mixed results were noted in a 2016 study of research on vitamin E as a scar treatment. Although some studies have shown that vitamin E contributes to a major improvement in scar appearance, there have been no benefits identified by others.
Some studies also suggested that vitamin E causes additional adverse effects, such as a rash and itching.
Individuals who wants to pursue using a vitamin E cream should talk to a dermatologist first.
Research from 2015 showed that the regular application of a specific rosehip oil brand to scars enhanced their appearance for 12 weeks, minimizing redness and discoloration.
However, the study was limited, so there is a need for more studies to determine if it is an effective treatment.
Individuals should dilute any essential oils in a carrier oil before trying to apply them to the skin to avoid causing an adverse reaction.
The process of removing old and dead skin cells is exfoliation. Exfoliating a scar may help to remove some of the tissue that is rough or discolored and expose the younger tissue beneath.
Exfoliants can be chemical or mechanical.
Face scrubs, pumice stones, and loofahs contain mechanical exfoliants, all of which have a rough texture that can chip dead skin cells away.
Some lotions, ointments, and body washes containing chemicals that pull away the old skin cells to expose younger skin are chemical exfoliants.
Some OTC creams and ointments for scar removal can help remove chickenpox scars.
Individuals can search for particular components, such as retinol and glycolic acid, which are popular in acne scar products.
For chickenpox wounds, which are similar to acne scars in appearance, these ingredients can also be helpful.
OTC chemical peels
There are also some OTC chemical peels available. These peels appear to be less successful and can only have subtle results than medical peel treatments.
Some individuals can find that it helps them achieve lasting results by visiting a doctor for a professional peel and then using at-home peels for upkeep.
Silicone sheets are sheets that a person applies to their scars daily for a fixed period, generally over 6 months.
The sheets can help the scarred tissue to hydrate and cause scars to fade.
Some individuals prefer medical attention for the removal of chickenpox scars. The best option for severe scarring could be clinical treatment.
Such therapies include:
Fillers may add structure to the affected skin, also called soft-tissue fillers. In the treatment of pockmarks and sunken wounds, fillers may be more successful. To fill the indentation, doctors inject a secure material, such as fat or hyaluronic acid, into the scar.
As fillers break down over time, repeat therapy is needed approximately once every 6 months.
Dermabrasion and microdermabrasion
Similar methods are dermabrasion and microdermabrasion, both of which can be useful for enhancing the appearance of scar tissue.
In order to loosen and remove the scar tissue, microdermabrasion involves a dermatologist using a system that blasts zinc oxide or sodium bicarbonate particles onto the skin. Alternatively, using a system that has a coating of diamond particles, they may brush the scarred region. A vacuum will then be used by the skin care professional to remove the residue left on the skin.
To scrape away the top layers and deeper areas of the scar, Dermabrasion uses a stiff, rapidly rotating brush.
Chemical peels often re-surface the skin like dermabrasion, but instead they use chemicals to break down the top layers of the skin.
A strong acid is used by physicians, which breaks down older skin layers. The skin layers below appear more fresh, so that the scar tissue might not be as visible.
It is important to remember that, after a chemical peel, the skin will still be tender and vulnerable to damage for several days.
Microneedling can help to remove scars as well. Doctors first apply an anesthetic to the region around the scar in order to conduct microneedling. To repeatedly puncture the skin, they then roll a small tool with a covering of tiny needles over the area.
In order to produce collagen, the needles stimulate the skin cells, which can make the skin appear smoother.
Many people need several microneedling sessions before they see any consequences. The procedure also causes some bleeding.
Excision removes the chickenpox scar by cutting it away. Doctors can cut out the scarred section of skin and stitch the wound back up. However, these stitches tend to leave new scars.
People with deeply pocked or pitted wounds may be glad to trade them from the stitches for a thin linear scar.
With chickenpox scars, many forms of laser therapy can help. One of the most effective methods of treating wounds and chickenpox marks is now laser therapy.
To reduce the appearance of wounds, laser therapy utilizes high-energy light.
In order to reduce their chance of extremely noticeable chickenpox scars, people should take some preventive measures. This may involve:
- Avoiding scratching: scratching can result in scar tissue from chickenpox sores or scabs. For most individuals, long-term scarring isn’t worth the immediate relief they feel from scratching the sore.
- Sunscreen wearing at all times: Sunscreen wearing will help prevent a scar from becoming darker. Darker scars appear to be more visible, so it may help to minimize their exposure by wearing a powerful sunscreen of at least SPF 30.
- Moisturizing the skin: During a chickenpox outbreak, keeping the skin hydrated can be helpful.
- Trying antihistamines: Certain individuals may find that taking OTC antihistamines helps decrease chickenpox itchiness. It is also possible to purchase versions of common antihistamines that are safe for children.
To help remove chickenpox scars, many therapies are available. Home remedies can help people with mild scars, while for more serious cases, medical treatments are available.
A doctor or dermatologist may ask someone who has chickenpox what their best way is to deal with open sores. To help prevent scarring, it is important to avoid scratching.