Some Simple Things to Do to Minimize Scars

2009-02-21 20:42

The stitches are out. What are some simple things that you can do to minimize the scar?

Even though the stitches are out, the wound is not finished healing. The body does most of the healing of a laceration within two weeks, but will continue to "mold" and "change" the scar for up to two years.

It is important for the stitches need to come out early so that there will not be "stitch marks" or "rail road marks" from the stitches themselves. The "new scar" or "recently healed laceration" needs to still be protected from tension so it won't be pulled back open or the scar widened.

Steristrips can do this, but so can a piece of paper tape applied along (or across) the "healed" scar. Both of these allow the strip or tape to have the tension placed on them rather than actual scar.

Newly healed skin needs to be protect the scar from the sun. Apply sunscreen daily to the scar, if exposed (face, neck, hand), for 6 months or more. This will allow the red color of the newly healed skin/scar to fade.


Applying sunscreen also "massages" the scar as it is rubbed on. Scar massage helps in the "realignment" of the collagen during the maturation phase (up to two years). It is easier to do scar massage if you use something like cocoa butter, vitamin E, Mederma, Aquafor, or just a favorite lotion.

The key to scar massage is to simply do it. Gently massage along the scar. Gently "pinch" the scar up if the scar feels like it is trying to "stick" or adhere to the underlying tissues.

If the scar allows (won't work on areas with great movement), silicone sheeting products can be used. It is hard to use both this and some of the scar massage suggestions at the same time. The Mederma or vitamin E, etc must be cleasned off the skin really well before applying the silicone sheeting.

Remember scars fade, but don't ever go completely away. Scar revisions are not usually done for a minimal of 6 months, as we know that scars change, flatten, and fade. Exceptions to this rule are when the scar is obviously creating a tether across a joint (can not straighten the elbow) or deforming (pulling the lower eyelid away from the eye).

If the scar appears to be getting "puffier" or thicker, it can often be helpful to inject the scar with Kenalog. This must be done carefully, as the injection can thin the scar/skin (atrophy) and decrease pigmentation in the skin. These risks must be weighed against the benefits expected to be gained.

Other things that can help with healing include: not smoking, good nutrition, and keeping other disease processes under control (ie diabetes and hypothroidism).

Subscribe to EmaxHealth on YouTube


I was recently bite on the right side of my lip, under my nose by a dog. I had about 4 stitches, some on the top of my lip. Is there anything different for this area of the body? Also, does the skin on the lip heal any faster or better than other parts of the skin?
I recently had a scooter accident and split my eyebrow open half an inch and scraped most of the skin off the right side of my lip (on the lip and slightly above it) and all I can say about the lip injury is KEEP IT MOISTURIZED. I kept a vasaline consistency chap-stick slathered on it at all times and would use a warm damp washcloth to *GENTLY* wipe away the excess skin pieces as they peeled off. Its been just under a month and you can't even see that I scraped the skin off there, no scar at all. Just remember, keep it moisturized so it wont dry and crack which is both very painful and makes scars more likely. Hope this helps!
But what about your eyebrow ? how did you treated it? or did you get a scar?
Thank you so much. Your case is exactly same as mine. I have also tore my right sight of eyebrow skin this morning and now stitches have been done. All I am worried is about the scars. I hope your tip works. Bless you.
How to minimize scars from stitches?
I have been stabbed 9 times on face and have very big lacerations all over my face especially both cheeks and nose was ripped open. the Plastic surgeon did a phenomenol job at stitching.. Noe the stitches have been removed. I am just worried about scarring.
Stabbed?? OMG so sorry to hear about you. I am two months post my plastic surgery on face and have found that scar massaging with any scar reducing cream ( I used Cicatrix) is supremely useful. The scars have lessened in intensity to quite some extent. A year more to go I guess. Hope you get well soon.
Thanks Monalisa. Yes I have been massaging using cocoa butter. How many times do you massage in a day and for how long and how hard? I can see the redness decreasing but the scars are still quite visible and i feel they have widened and also became a little indented. I contacted the Surgeon and she asked me to come back in September as they need to see how the skin heals first before they can suggest anything further.
Fastest way to get rid of acne scars as i'm going on holiday in a few months
Ive got a scar on my forehead since i was 6 (Im 15 now).It was a clean cut but i needed 13 stiches but my scar has not healed very much during the 9 years .Im worried that my scar wont fully heal...
I have scars on both arms from self harm (I'm about a month clean of it and plan to stay that way) and a friend told me chapstick will make them fade. Well these were older scars and I was really skeptical because they've been there for a long time and we're darker than the rest of my skin, but to my suprise I've been using chapstick on the scars for a week and they are almost completely faded. I'm amazed and glad that I can finally wear my short sleeve shirts again! Moral of my story, minor scars apparently fade if you use chapstick. The deeper scars even lightened a little and are less noticable.
I was in a bad car accident 2 days ago. My head hit windshield spilt open right under my hair line on forehead I received 30 stitches and the dr. At trauma center said I looked like I was scalped by an Indian. It's at least 4 inches long and it was open down to the bone. What's the best method to use when I get my stitches out
There are so many different scars that happen to just go lengthwise, I wasn't sure if any of these answers applied to me. So I'm going to ask about a different laceration. About a month ago I received a deep cut on my finger in the shape of an oval. As in, the glass that cut it ripped the skin from under and upwards, causing a depression of sorts. (Many apologies if this is grotesque). In a nutshell, my skin was shoveled out of my finger (before reaching any tendon or further) and was basically draped back and stitched down. I kept up with treating it for about a week and ran out of my ointment. It's been a month, the stitches are out, and is, I guess, "healed". Except that the scar is bulging and numb in feeling. Is there anyway to diminish the scar left? I work with facials and skin care, so not only is the scar really sensitive to the weird numb feeling, but it looks very obvious. Is there still time to correct the scar? If anyone knows - How? And by how much?
Hi guys I got 6 stiches under my left eye 2 weeks removed the dissolvable stiches on 8th day.. Now im worried about scar.. At the moment it looks like a scratch. Im just using vitamin A cream on it and cover it wid a bandage during d day. Any suggestion what extra i can do to prevent scaring? Thnx
I was stabbed with a bottle 17stichs on my cheech.,what I should use to minimise scars so fast