How can I achieve the best scars?
With any cosmetic operation, the aim is to produce a beautiful scar. Scars can be red for the first 6 to 9 months and then gradually become paler and blend into the skin by around 18 to 24 months.
The vast majority of scars if left alone will settle down on their own accord. However, some strategies can help scars to mature and soften more quickly.
- Regular moisturising and massaging of the scar. This can usually be started from around 3-weeks following surgery. A non-perfumed moisturising cream should be used, and the scar should be massaged for 5-10 minutes every day. If the scar feels firm and becomes slightly raised, it is important to be firmer with your massage. Mr Sawyer suggests using a Vitamin E containing cream.
- Silicone gels are a slightly sticky clear gel that comes in a tube. For these products to work properly, they need to be worn on the scar for 24 hours a day (apart from showering), every day for 3-6 months. They will not have any effect if only worn occasionally.
- Stay out of the sun. Fresh scars that are exposed to the sun will stay red longer and always use sunblock.
- Avoid excessive pulling and tension, which causes scars to widen and stretch.
- Occasionally laser treatments are of use particularly in red scars