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Treating scars

The body heals injuries by producing excess collagen and closing the wound with a scar. Skin color and skin thickness affect the ways scars look. A wound closure causes three types of scarring: normal, hypertrophic and keloid.

Normal scars are flat and thin. Hypertrophic are thick, raised and red. Keloid scars are raised, darker, redder, and expand past the normal injury. There appears to be a genetic component to keloid scars and some doctors treat them by injecting steroid medication into the collagen overproduction.

To minimize scarring, pay attention to the wound. If it is a deep wound, stitches are probably in order. Do not wait for this. Leaving wounds open allows bacteria to enter and infections to set in. Keeping the skin moist with the application of petroleum jelly and a non-stick bandage can help speed the healing. There is no medical evidence that vitamin E or scar creams work outside of moisturization. What does seem to work is massaging that moisturization into the wounded area daily. Keep in mind that sun can discolor scars so use a sunscreen on the scar specifically.

Scars are part of the body’s natural healing process. Do not pick any scabs because the healing process will have to begin again. Be patient, it will probably take a full year for the healing process to complete. Your job is to feed the body healthy fresh foods. Outside of that, your body knows what it is doing.

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