Acne Scars

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Acne scars

What are acne scars?

If you’ve had a history of or currently have acne, especially with painful cysts or long-lasting bumps, you may have acne scars that are leftover. Your scars can look like big pores or divots in the skin (we call those ice pick scars) or they may look like wide depressions/little dents (boxcar scars) in the skin. Acne may also leave red and dark spots, and while they are not technically scars, they are common and can be treated effectively. Rarely, acne bumps can also lead to keloid types of scars, which are usually raised, hard, and darker in color. Research shows that the longer the acne bump is present, the more likely it is to leave a scar.

If you have acne scars that make you feel uncomfortable, you might want to consider scar treatment. A Board-certified dermatologist can tell you what type of treatment may help diminish the appearance of your scars. Schedule an appointment with Steele Dermatology online or give us a call at (770) 464-6000.

What causes acne scars?

When you have acne bumps that are very inflamed, think of it like a fire. That fire can burn the normal skin tissue around it. As a result, once the fire is extinguished (or the acne bump goes away), it can leave a permanent loss of normal skin tissue, which looks like a dent or hole. They are permanent, i.e. they won’t go away unless you have some sort of treatment. Red and dark spots may go away on their own over time, assuming that the underlying acne is treated.

Where do you get acne scars?

You may have acne scars anywhere you have acne – the face, chest, back, shoulders, etc.

How do we treat acne scars?

As you can see, acne scars come in many different shapes, sizes and sorts. We treat the scars for what they are. If they’re red, we use a laser that targets redness. If they’re dark, we use creams or chemical peels to address discoloration. If they are like dents in the skin, we use treatments to stimulate new collagen and fillers to fill in the dents. Acne scars are difficult to treat, so we often use multiple treatments together to get the best results.



Microneedling is a procedure where tiny needles puncture the skin in a repeated and controlled manner. The needles spark the natural healing process in the skin, to make new fresh skin and repair scars and damaged skin. Numbing is required prior to the procedure to ensure that we are able to reach the proper therapeutic depth and medical grade results.

Laser Genesis Skin Toning

Laser Skin Toning – Laser Genesis

Laser Skin Toning with Laser Genesis is a safe and effective laser treatment to help even skin texture and tone/color for all skin types. A no downtime, “lunchtime” laser treatment that stimulates healthy collagen remodeling to smooth the texture. May be helpful for mild scarring/acne scarring, and also in conjunction with other procedures like microneedling.

Laser skin resurfacing

CO2 Laser Skin Resurfacing

Laser CO2 Resurfacing is a powerful laser treatment that smooths and tightens skin. The energy from this laser can blast away skin that shows deep scars, wrinkles, and other textural changes. CO2 laser treatment can be used to treat some of the deepest, most severe or most widespread cases of acne scarring.

Dermal fillers

Dermal Fillers

Injectable fillers are used to add volume to areas of the skin that are lacking. In the case of acne scars, they may be sunken in due to inadequate collagen or fat underlying the area, so fillers may elevate those sunken areas. We often use them with other treatments like microneedling or laser. Today’s fillers are usually hyaluronic acids, but can be also be collagen, calcium hydroxyapatite or your own fat.

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Schedule an Appointment

With offices conveniently located in Atlanta and Alpharetta, Steele Dermatology offers several treatment options for the removal of acne scars. To learn which treatment may be right for you, schedule an appointment or give us a call at (770) 464-6000.