Ointments to Prevent Scarring

Scars are part of the body's natural healing process, as the injured skin or other organ creates new tissue to knit together the wounded pieces. While every wound will create some bit of scar tissue, copious collagen production or improper wound care can result in thick, unsightly scar formation after injuries to the skin. Some ointments can help prevent scarring from becoming excessive after burns, cuts, or acne outbreaks.

Ointments Can Help Prevent Scarring (Image: Zeljko Bozic/Hemera/Getty Images)

Prevent Burn Scarring

Ointments should never be placed immediately on the open wound of a serious burn, advises the University of Maryland Medical Center. After cooling minor first degree burns or sunburn with cool running water, or in the later healing stages of second or third degree burns, the University of Maryland Medical Center suggests that calendula ointment can be gently rubbed on the burn area to promote healing and minimize development of scarring. Calendula is an extract from the plant Calendula officinalis, and is used in homeopathic ointments for skin wound healing treatment. Calendula ointment is available at natural food stores, and is made by numerous homeopathic treatment companies including Hylands, Boiron, and Nature's Remedies.

Acne Scar Ointments

Acne can created pitted scars on the face, especially in severe outbreaks where pimples become infected. The best way to prevent acne scarring is by prompt, early treatment, according to the Brown University Student Health Services. Wait until the active acne breakouts have cleared up, Brown Health Services advises, then apply vitamin E or cocoa butter ointments, or use Mederma (NOTE: INSERT REGISTERED TRADEMARK SYMBOL) brand scar cream. Brown Health Services reports that Mederma (REGISTERED TRADEMARK SYMBOL) is used in the medical field to soften and minimize surgical scar appearance, and has been demonstrated to have a positive effect on acne scars as well.

Ointments for Wounds

Appropriate wound care treatment minimizes the risk of unsightly scarring at the sight of a cut or wound, according to Dr. Kristie Leong writing for the HealthMad website. In addition to covering the cut or wound site with silicone sheets during initial healing, and then massaging the cut to break up heavy collagen bonds that form as scar tissue grows, Dr. Leong recommends keeping the injury site lightly covered with a protective bandage placed over a thin layer an an antibiotic ointment such as Neosporin brand First Aid Antibiotic Ointment. Reducing the risk of infection and allowing air to circulate around the wound will help minimize the risk of unsightly scar formation.

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