Everyone’s skin responds differently to injuries and for many people, keloid scarring is a common occurrence.
As you probably already know, keloids are raised scars that extend beyond the original injury and it doesn’t take much for it to form. A keloid can form after a simple injury such as a shaving cut, with most keloids only appearing several months after your skin was injured.
Is It a Keloid or Not?
You can easily identify a keloid by looking out for the following characteristics:
- The scar starts as raised and pink or red in colour. A keloid starts out as a raised scar that is red, pink or even purple in colour. The scar’s colour will start to get darker with time.
- Growth is slow. Keloid scars form slowly, which means you will only notice it several months to a year after you actually injured your skin.
- The scar will feel soft to the touch. Keloid scars won’t feel the same as the rest of your skin. They tend to feel almost doughy to the touch.
- It may itch and feel tender. As a keloid scar starts to grow, the area will feel tender and itchy, but this will subside once the keloid has reached its full size.
According to keloid scar removal specialist in Mildura Dr Omarjee, a keloid scar can form anywhere on the body but they most commonly occur on the ears, chest, back, shoulders and neck. You can find more details here.
How Did This Happen?
When you injure your skin, it will repair itself by forming a scar. Unfortunately, scar tissue can continue forming long after the injury has healed, which is when a keloid forms. Unfortunately, there is no concrete reason why certain people tend to scar in this way.
A keloid scar can form after puncturing or cutting the skin, getting a piercing or tattoo, after an injection or when healing from a condition such as acne or chicken pox.
Some people are also more likely to develop keloids than others. A doctor for keloid scarring will usually remove keloids on people who fall into one or more of these categories:
- Younger than 30
- Black, Latino or Asian
- Going through puberty
- Family history of keloids
Can Keloids Be Prevented?
If you’ve developed keloids in the past or you know that you fall into one of the above-mentioned categories, you should refrain from doing anything that might injure your skin as often as possible, including getting a piercing or tattoo. If you are planning to get your ears pierced, you have the option to wear pressure earrings, which will reduce the likelihood of scars forming.
Simple Solutions for Keloid Scars
When treating keloids, the goal is to shrink and flatten them but they’re not easy to get rid of and can return after treatment. Here are a few of the treatment options you can consider:
- Cryotherapy. If the keloid is relatively small, it’s possible to reduce the size and hardness of the scar using controlled cooling.
- Keloid Injections. Injections that contain a special mixture of anti-inflammatory medication be used to shrink the keloid.
- Surgery. A keloid can also be removed by cutting it out but it’s very likely to return.
- Silicone Sheets. Placing a silicone gel or sheet over the keloid will help flatten it.
- Laser Therapy. Advanced laser technology can be used to fade the keloid’s colour and reduce its size.
- Pressure treatment. By placing pressure on the scar after injury, it reduces blood flow and can prevent the keloid from returning.
Not all treatments will be right for you, which is why it’s best to speak to a qualified doctor who can assist you. Be sure to discuss all of your options with your doctor to ensure there is very little chance of the keloid returning again.
Are Keloids a Health Risk?
Keloids are definitely not harmful to your health but they can have an effect on your self-esteem.
Most people don’t seek treatment because the scar is painful, they simply don’t like the way it looks and feel embarrassed in professional and social situations. Fortunately, there are several effective ways to treat them whenever they do form or if they return.