Fun facts about scar healing
Patients always ask about how long their scars will take to heal. The answer is always the same: one year. That is how long scars take to fully heal. However, scar healing is also dependent upon the location of the scar on the body. Here are some very important facts about the scar healing process:
1. The outer layer of skin (epidermis) heals very rapidly after an incision is repaired (i.e. 24 -48 hours). This process is called epithelialization.
2. The inner deep layer of skin (dermis) takes much longer to heal as your body’s cell lay down scar in the form of a protein called fibrin.
3. In order for the dermis to heal, your body deposits many different cell types into the area of the scar. These cells secrete many chemicals (cytokines) which lead to swelling and red coloration of the scar. This is why new scars almost always appear thick and pink or red in color.
4. Internal absorbable sutures keep the dermis together while your body heals this newly repaired incision.
5. Scars that occur in younger and tighter skin tend to heal less well than those that occur in skin that is older and has more wrinkles. At least there is one great benefit to aging!
6. Scars take about one full calendar year to completely fade, soften and flatten. Be patient.