Improperly functioning and/or unattractive skin can play a big role in the quality of a person’s life. And while most dermatological ailments aren’t life-threatening, they can still significantly reduce your confidence and make it difficult for you to complete obligations and enjoy hobbies. Unfortunately, this is especially true for those suffering from keloids.
What Are Keloids?
Keloids are a non-lethal condition categorized by firm, red, and itchy or irritated nodules on the surface of the skin. The nodules, or bumps, tend to become larger over time and are usually the result of some kind of damage, injury or trauma to the epidermis. Modern-day medical science is able to treat and heal keloids through a wide variety of options. However, self-care is generally sufficient for most people, especially in mild to moderate cases.
It’s important to note, though, that keloid self-care should never involve an attempt to cut out the scar tissue. In fact, most doctors won’t do that because it’s likely to result in an even bigger keloid developing at the removal site. Either way, keloids are curable with the right measures and if the cause of their development is clearly understood.
How Are Keloids Caused?
Unfortunately, doctors don’t yet know the exact cause of keloid formation. It’s believed that small changes in the body’s proliferation and inflammation control centers may be the culprit. However, those suspected changes haven’t been studied enough to explain the mysterious defect in human wound healing.
What we do know is thatthe development of a keloid can be caused by a wide variety of things and may affect a person regardless of their age, gender, ethnicity, lifestyle or overall wellbeing. In general, however, keloids are the result of an abnormal formation of scar tissue. Therefore, those who have a propensity towards abnormal scarring and/or keloids should avoid unnecessary surgeries and cosmetic procedures unless otherwise directed by a doctor.
What Are the Risk Factors?
Knowing the risk factors associated with keloids is the best way to prevent and/or treat them when they appear. On average, people with a dark skin complexion are at a greater risk of developing keloids after injury, surgery or trauma. However, skin pigmentation (or lack thereof) is not considered a risk factor but rather a liability.
Either way, keloid risk factors involve more genetic proponents than anything else. Often running in families, keloid formations are 15-times more common in people of African, Asian, or Hispanic descent. Described as “the scar that just won’t stop,” keloids tend to behave in the same basic way for all sufferers despite their genetic background or complexion. Characterized by a heaped-up scar that may continue to grow without proper treatment, keloids sometimes require medical attention regardless of how or why they are caused.
What Are the Symptoms of Keloids?
Usually, keloids develop on certain parts of the body, namely on the back, the earlobes, the shoulders, the chest and/or the hands. Rarely, keloids will also form on the face, although they seldom ever develop along the jawline. Fortunately, keloids are painless and innocuous for most sufferers, although minor irritation has been reported in some cases. That’s precisely why, for many people, using apple cider vinegar for keloid treatment is so relieving.
The Safest and Most Effective Treatments for Keloids
Despite today’s medical professionals’ somewhat limited knowledge about the causes of keloids, there are still numerous treatment options available to the average patient. Many times, more than one treatment option will be used. The following five are generally considered to be the safest and most effective medically provided remedies for keloids:
- Surgical Removal – This option is safe and effective but generally thought of as unreliable since the keloids often return unless the treatment is combined with other ones.
- Silicone Dressings – This moist wound covering is safe and painless, plus it’s been shown to reduce the size of most keloids over time.
- Corticosteroid Injections – This effective but uncomfortable treatment involves repetitive injections containing triamcinolone acetonide to decrease keloid size and reduce skin irritation.
- Cryosurgery – This option uses liquid nitrogen to freeze the keloid off the skin, although it may lighten the complexion at the application site.
- Laser Therapy – This relatively new treatment alternative provides the same results as surgical removal while making keloid recurrence less likely.
Seeking medical attention for keloids may be necessary if it’s life-threatening or detrimental to your mental health. However, some at-home remedies may render the same (if not better) results without costing as much or requiring as much time and attention on your behalf. One such remedy, apple cider vinegar, may be used if medical assistance is not necessary.
How to Properly Use Apple Cider Vinegar for Keloids
Apple cider vinegar is a staple in most modern-day homes, used primarily for cooking and homeopathic healthcare. Interestingly, this naturally versatile substance has been proven to help minimize the size and appearance of keloid scars. Here’s how to use it for best results:
- Using a clean cloth, gentle apply a generous amount of apple cider vinegar to the affected area.
- Massage the saturated cloth into the skin until it’s well absorbed.
- Allow the liquid to dry on the skin for several minutes and then repeat 3 to 4 times.
Following the steps above can help expedite the healing of your keloids. Be sure to soak the scar with apple cider vinegar at last a few times per day for several weeks. Due to the overwhelming aroma of ACV and its ability to cause minor skin irritation, dilute it with equal parts water to reduce side effects. For maximum results, pair your apple cider vinegar treatment with organic tea tree oil.
If you found this article about keloids informative, you may also like to read Safe and Effective Home Remedies for Stye