Everything You Need To Know About Atrophic Depressed Scars

Do you want to know about atrophic depressed scars? Do you think you have an atrophic depressed scar but are not sure about it? If you have been looking for answers to your questions, then you’re in luck. This article will tell you all that you need to know about atrophic depressed scars.

What are atrophic depressed scars?

Atrophic depressed scars are a form of acne scar. They are a type of atrophic scar that is found among many acne patients. It is possible to happen when the breakout heals but leaves behind a depression in the skin.

It might be caused by water retention while at the same time causing fibrous tissue buildup.

Atrophic depressed scars are created when there is a loss of collagen. There are two types of atrophic scars, which include:

Shallow Atrophic Scars– Shallow atrophic scars are typically small and often appear as numerous tiny cuts (pockmarks) on the skin.

Deep Atrophic Scars– Deep atrophic scars can be quite noticeable, especially on people with dark skin tones. They tend to look like large craters or ice pick marks on your face and are usually deep enough so that the bottom of the scar sits below your skin’s surface.

How do they form?

Open depressed scars are most commonly the result of acne or other inflammatory skin conditions like rosacea.

These types of scars occur when the comedones (pore) become so engorged with oil and dead skin cells that it causes a rupture in the follicle wall. When this happens, infected material can spill out into surrounding tissue, creating deeper lesions.

The body responds to these lesions by forming new collagen fibers. These repairs usually aren’t as strong as the original skin tissues and can lead to depressed areas of skin.

Atrophic scars can also be caused by trauma to the skin, such as cuts or burns; however, they are more likely to form when there is an infection involved with your injury because infections cause collage breakdown and kill surrounding tissues.

Is acne ever the cause of atrophic depressed scars?


Acne is a skin condition, whereas atrophic depressed scars are a type of scar; acne does not cause wounds, and atrophic depressed scars form when the body’s collagen collapses during wound healing.

That being said, it’s possible that the treatment you receive for acne could lead to an injury that in turn causes an atrophic depressed scar. It’s important to be careful with any tool that can harm the surface of your skin (think: pore strips, exfoliation razors).

What is the difference between an ice pick scar, a boxcar scar, and a rolling scar?

Acne scars come in all shapes and sizes, but it’s safe to say that they’re typically either ice pick scars, boxcar scars, or rolling scars (although they can also be a mix of these types).

Ice Pick Scars

These are the deepest type of atrophic scars. They have steep sides that dive straight down into the skin, resembling an ice pick. Ice pick scars are usually very small (1-2mm), but they can sometimes be larger, like a deep pore. They are most commonly found on the cheeks and jawline but may appear anywhere on the body.

Ice pick scars are narrow, deep, and V-shaped. They’re usually the most difficult to treat because they go deep into the skin—ones that are in hard-to-reach places like on your temples or near your mouth may not even be eligible for treatment options like punch elevation (more on this later).

Boxcar Scars

Boxcar scars are wider, shallow, and U-shaped. These atrophic acne scars have defined edges and can be more superficial or deeper than rolling scars. Boxcar scars tend to be wider than ice pick scars

Rolling Scars

Rolling scars appear as broad depressions in the skin that look like rolling hills. They have sloped edges that merge with normal-looking skin and present with a wavy appearance. They are typically wider than ice picks scars and usually cover larger areas of the face than ice pick scars do.

Rolling scars are broader and have a wave-like appearance.

What causes atrophic depressed scars to get worse?

Advances in skincare research and our understanding of skin health have resulted in new treatments for atrophic depressed scars, but it’s important to understand that none of the treatments can be considered a cure.

Before you decide on a treatment plan, first ask yourself: How do I want my scar to look? Some people will opt not to treat their atrophic depressed scars, while others will choose treatment options that reduce color or fill out the area where the scar is located.

It’s also important to know that your scar may become worse over time.

Atrophic depressed scars can get worse over time, especially if you:

  • Don’t protect your skin from the sun. Exposing atrophic scars to UV rays can make them darker in color.
  • Use products that irritate your skin or cause allergic reactions. For instance, some acne products can dry out your skin and make it flaky. This can lead to more inflammation and make atrophic depressed scars more noticeable.
  • Pick at or pop pimples. This can make acne blemishes worse and cause scarring.
  • Stretch your skin in certain ways. Stretching the skin around a healed wound may make scarring worse, especially if you have darker-colored skin.
  • If you have stretch marks, they may get worse after pregnancy as your skin changes shape after childbirth.

How do you treat atrophic depressed scars?

Atrophic depressed scars can be treated with a medical-grade peel.

There are many treatment options for atrophic depressed scars, but one of the top choices is a chemical peel. This is a skin treatment that removes the outermost layers of skin to stimulate cell production and give your skin a brighter, smoother appearance.

Chemical peels can be applied to the face, neck, chest, arms, and hands. They can be done in your doctor’s office or at home depending on their strength.

Chemical peels can help improve acne breakouts and scarring by removing dead cells from the surface of your skin and allowing new ones to grow in their place. They also have a moisturizing effect that helps keep skin looking more flawless after healing.

What is a chemical peel?

A chemical peel is a treatment used to improve the appearance and texture of facial skin (and sometimes other parts of the body) by removing the top layer(s). This exfoliation process improves skin tone and texture, reduces discoloration, and helps minimize pore size.

Chemical peels are found in many commercial beauty products, but professional (in-office) treatments involve higher concentrations of exfoliating acids.

There are three main types of chemical peels: superficial (light), medium-depth, and deep. Each type removes a different layer of skin: superficial peels only remove the outermost layer; medium-depth peels remove outer layers as well as part of the middle layer, and deep peels penetrate all three layers.

By targeting deeper layers when treating scars, doctors can often achieve greater results than those obtained with OTC products alone.

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