Preventing Keloid Scars After Surgery (A Complete Guide With Tips)


Sometimes, surgery is inevitable, but they can leave awful keloid scars. These scars can also grow after body piercings, tattoos, or any other kinds of interventions. If you want to prevent the formation of keloids, you should definitely start treating your wound from the surgery right away. In this way, it can heal faster and leave less scarring.

To cover their new wounds, people usually tend to use Vaseline and a bandage. They place a bandage on the wound, pressure it and wash it with water and soap every single day. Another thing you should probably consider doing is using a silicone gel and a bandage after the wound is healed. But you have to remember, a keloid might grow in three months or more, so it is better to keep the bandage on the skin longer.

The main point is to not waste any time and start treating the wound fast. Many folks don’t do what is necessary after surgery, and this guide is going to help you understand the basics of treating postoperative wounds. That way you can be more prepared to do your best in order to prevent the formation of keloid scars.




Tips For Preventing Keloid Scars


So, your surgery was a success and now you’re in the process of healing. What can you do to prevent keloids from forming as time goes on? Here are some tips that will help you stay ahead of the game...


Keep the wound clean after surgery

You should remember it is essential to clean your wounds with mild soap and water in order to keep the germs away and remove any debris. If you do not do this procedure, you will face the risk of getting an infection or receive bigger scars. Of course, you should always wash your hands first before you touch the wound. You will be better off if you prepare more bandage, and change it more often.


Moisturize the wound

Sometimes scars tend to dry up and reopen. That is why it is important to keep your wound moisturized. You may try heating up a wet washcloth and place it on your skin. The injured skin will be moist heated, and then you can apply a gentle moisturizer. There are a variety of moisturizers at present, you just need to pick the one that is not going to irritate your skin. It is good to keep your skin well-hydrated anytime, especially after surgery.


Try herbal and home remedies

If you do not believe in home remedies and do not think they will actually heal your scars, you can be sure that at least they will keep them lubricated. It is believed that onion extract is effective for the removal of new scars. In fact, there is a large number of products you may try such as aloe vera gels, cocoa butter, lavender products, apple cider vinegar, calendula or lemon.

Wounds often cause darkness, and these remedies will help lighten your skin. Herbs are often considered a powerful weapon for the treatment of different complicated medical conditions. Turns out, they are pretty effective when it comes to the prevention of keloid scars.


Do not expose yourself to sun

We all know patients are advised to stay away from the sun after interventions. It is valid for the postoperative period and the prevention of keloid scars as well. You should wear protective clothing and use sunscreen if you go out in the warmest summer months. UV Rays are harmful, especially around lunchtime. If you are going to the seaside, you should not stay on the beach at this time, because the sun can encourage the development of keloids.


Do not pop pimples

Nowadays, lots of people suffer from different skin problems such as acne. They are always irritated and have the desire to pop their pimples, but it is not right, and it can lead to the occurrence of keloid scars. It is not surgery, but these scars tend to occur after popping, so be careful and do not touch your pimples. The pimples can be swollen and itchy, but so can the keloids, and apparently it won't make any difference if you pop the pimples. It can only get even worse.

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Why Do Keloid Scars Form After Surgery?



Basically, keloid scars occur due to the injury of the skin after surgery, trauma, vaccinations, piercings or acne. They form because a thick tissue grows up and out from the damaged skin area. Keloids can be light pink or dark brown, and they are commonly formed after surgeries and piercings as well.

Piercing may not sound as serious as surgery, and a lot of people do it these days but for your body, it may be a serious threat. Your body makes scar tissue in order to replace the old one. But when it makes too much, this leads to the occurrence of keloids.

Then, the extra tissue is spreading out from the wound, and you may notice a bump or a small mass, which will be even bigger from your piercing. Keloids are likely to develop very quickly. They normally form a couple of months after you have done surgery or an ear-piercing. But of course, surgery and piercing are not the only damages of the skin, which can cause keloid scars.

The medicine is quite developed nowadays, but this does not mean you won't get any scars after surgery or other trauma. After all, there is a break in your skin and it takes time to heal. The body has its own healing process after surgery or other interventions and scars are a normal part of this process.

The process of wound repair in your skin and the other tissues is what causes a scar in the first place. When the thick layer of the skin, also known as the dermis, is damaged, your body forms new collagen fibers that result in the formation of a scar. And now is the moment to mention the risk factors.

Some people are more likely to receive a keloid scar after surgery than others. People, whose skin tone is darker, are more endangered by keloids. Of course, genetics also plays a major role. If someone from your family used to have keloids, it is more possible for you to get them too. According to specialists, keloids are more common among people under the age of 30 years old.




Things to Avoid After Surgery To Minimize Keloids


When surgery is over there are always a few dos and don’ts that will be recommended. These are things you’re going to want to strictly follow if you want to see good results. Here are some things you should definitely avoid...


Shaving

As mentioned, you should definitely try to avoid shaving in the postoperative period to prevent additional nicks and cuts near your wound from the surgery. But if you really need to do it, make sure you are extremely careful, and not use sharp razors. And it is not only about razors, women, who prefer an epilator, should not use it during the postoperative period. It might not be pleasant, but you have to pay more attention to your health.


Tattoos

You may think that getting a tattoo is a routine cosmetic procedure, but it turns out you have to wait at least 6 weeks or more after surgery if you are willing to get one. It is better to wait until your scar is thoroughly healed before you place a tattoo near it. Otherwise, you risk getting an infection or other serious skin problems. Everyone would love a cool tattoo, but you have to remember, your health always comes first.


Certain Foods

Did you know that nutrition actually plays a major role in the prevention of scarring after surgeries? There are foods you should avoid if you want your wound to heal faster. First of all, you should try to restrain yourself from eating so much sugar, because sugar can be harmful to skin problems.

It is believed to lower the quality of elastin and collagen, which have a key role in the process of healing. Nitrate-rich foods are also thought to be inappropriate after surgery because they can damage your blood vessels.

Not to mention how quickly alcohol absorbs the proteins and all the vitamins that are vital for the healing of your skin, that is why you should try to avoid it. Caffeine is something you should avoid as well because it can trouble the natural healing process of your skin.


Sun Tanning

If you happen to experience surgery during the summer, it would be better if you do not expose your wound directly to the sun. There are various sunscreen products on the market today, and you should pick the most appropriate for your condition. You may consider buying products with higher protective factors because they are certainly more effective. You should cover the wound with suitable clothes, and not let the harmful UV rays access your wound.


How Long Should I Expect To Be At Risk Of Keloid Formation?


Generally, keloids tend to appear slowly. Sometimes it takes more time before you notice the first sign of a keloid. You have to be careful and observe the condition of your wound. Most people think nothing is going to happen if there are no keloid scars days after the surgery, but it can take them from 3 to 12 months to appear.

So, almost a year after surgery, you are still at risk of keloid formation. Besides, keloids may continue growing for years. They will stop eventually, but they cannot disappear. In many cases, keloid scars require surgical removal. Once keloids are developed they are hard to be treated and they are likely to return.

People often use Vitamin E or coconut butter creams to treat the awful scars, but when this treatment is not enough, you have no choice but to look for a doctor, who is going to alter the shape of the scar or at least make it less noticeable.

Related Post: Does Aspirin Really Work for Keloid Scars?


Still Signs of Keloid Formation? How To Minimize the Appearance of Scarring



Do you notice signs of keloid formation months after your surgery? Unfortunately, they appear slowly, but they may take a lot of time to heal. It can take years before you get rid of a scar, but this does not mean you should become upset and desperate. However, there are certain things you should try to do on your own, and successfully minimize the appearance of scarring. It will be better if you try to stop the whole process of getting a scar. You should start taking precautions, and not waste a minute.

Silicone Gel - One of the most popular methods for minimizing the keloid formation appearance is applying a silicone gel. It has been proven to be effective, and it is widely used by people of all ages. According to research, silicone gel can help shrink the existing raised scars or prevent the formation of new ones. You have nothing to lose, so do not hesitate to try it. Silicone gels are easily accessible and quite affordable at present.

Skin Moisturizers - Today, you may find diverse skin products on the market. Specialists suggest you use a heavy skin cream or lotion such as lanolin or petrolatum because they might prevent the appearance of scars. You may also find various wonderful onion extract and Vitamin E containing creams.

Tretinoin Cream - This is another option for great results in the prevention of scarring, but it requires a prescription. It speeds up the natural cell turnover of the skin, and it is mostly used for the treatment of acne and aging. A study shows tretinoin cream can minimize the size of keloids and their appearance as a whole. So, if you are willing to try this cream, you should visit your doctor sooner, and ask for a prescription.

Cryotherapy - Have you ever heard of cryotherapy? For those not familiar with the term, it is the process when the tissues are temporarily frozen. Normally, it is done by a handheld device. Although most people succeed to endure the therapy, others might experience severe pain, while they put themselves on this procedure, but it goes away afterward. According to a study, cryotherapy can actually decrease the size of the keloids by 50 percent, but it is thought to be more effective for smaller keloids.

Steroid Injections - This is a method that has been used for a long time. It is well-known and very effective. But it is believed these injections are more appropriate for the treatment of new keloids, and when they are combined with surgery, they can help remove a part of the scar.

Radiation Therapy - This is a fairly new method, and it guarantees promising results. But this method is used after cutting out the keloids surgically. Dermatological studies show the rate of cure is high, and if not fully removed, keloids are improved.



Surgeries are always leading to the occurrence of unpleasant scars and often make you feel embarrassed or ashamed. But you do not need to worry, because, in the contemporary world, there are various methods that can help the prevention of keloid scars. When there is a break in your skin, the formation of a scar is inevitable, but again, it should not bother you. Although they might become infected, they are not contagious and dangerous. The keloids might hurt you a lot, but there are medications today, that will certainly help you relieve the severe pain.


Wrapping Things Up


The most important thing is to remember, you should not waste any time after your surgery. You should get it together, and begin treating the injured area. There are easy tips, which can help you prevent the occurrence of keloid scars, and if you follow them strictly, there will be no problem.

Those tips are not only about taking care of your skin. You should definitely improve your nutrition as well. There are certain foods, which can encourage the process of skin healing, you may do a profound research and check them out if you take an interest. But it is more important to remember the foods you should avoid if you want to have healthier skin and prevent the formation of keloid scars.

You should start paying more attention to your health and complete well-being, especially after an intervention. Avoiding keloid scars after surgery is not an easy task, but if you do your best, there is a chance you actually succeed!


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