What exactly are Keloids?
Keloids are often referred to as keloid scars because they are essentially scars that refuse to stop. The tough scar rises significantly above the skin and is usually purple or dark pink in color with a smooth top. Unlike normal scars, keloid scars continue to grow gradually and do not fade or diminish over the long term.
What causes keloid scars?
Doctors are not absolutely certain what causes keloids but they are thought to begin forming after some sort of skin injury. They also have a tendency to move from the injured area to surrounding areas. As well as injuries, they often start to develop following surgery, minor skin inflammation such as pimples and after cosmetic piercings.
Gender is irrelevant and men are equally susceptible to keloid scars as women. It is far less common for children and the elderly to develop keloids than younger adults. People with dark skin have a greater tendency to developing keloids though people with pale skin are not immune. It also appears likely that keloids may run in the family.
Where on the body do keloids appear?
Unlike acne or eczema, keloids rarely occur on the cheeks and face. They most often develop on the chest, shoulders, back, earlobes (often following a piercing) and on the jawline.
How To Get Rid of Keloids
For those that choose to treat their keloid scars, there are a number of conventional medical options available. Cortisone injections, laser treatment, cryotherapy and even surgery are possible. However, some of these procedures come with inevitable risks and many people would prefer to try treating them more naturally.
Fortunately there are a range of natural and safe options that you can use in the comfort of your own home to treat your keloid scars. There is no guarantee that they will be effective but we will take a look at some of the home treatments that have proven effective for a great many people.
You will need to be patient and keloid scars are very unlikely to disappear entirely but you may be able to reduce their appearance and at least stall their progress with many of the following remedies.
Natural remedies for keloid scars
1. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is chock full of all the nutrients and properties to treat a whole host of skin complaints including keloid scars. It is very important that you choose high quality organic apple cider vinegar.
In a quality vinegar the ‘mother’ found in this type of vinegar is what contains most of the goodness and health benefits. Applying apple cider vinegar to your keloid scar can help reduce the appearance and size of your scar and soothe any inflammation.
- Simply soak a cotton ball in your apple cider vinegar and apply it directly to your scar.
- Keep the cotton ball in place with the help of a band aid.
- Allow it to absorb into your skin for several hours before cleaning it off your skin.
- Repeat this process twice daily for as long as necessary.
2. Fresh lemon juice
Lemon juice is great for many skin conditions because it boasts vitamin C and natural antioxidant which heal the skin and diminish the appearance of scars.
- Squeeze a fresh lemon and extract all of its juice.
- Apply the juice to your keloid scar and let it absorb for at least 20 minutes before rinsing it away with clean warm water.
- Repeat this process once or twice a day and you should start to notice the difference.
3. Aloe vera
Aloe vera gel boasts antibacterial properties that not only make it a well-known traditional treatment for cuts and wounds but it can also help treat inflammatory skin complaints and diminish the appearance of scars.If you have fresh aloe vera leaves at your disposal, then cut the leaf lengthways and extract the gel.
- Alternatively, you can buy pre extracted aloe vera gel.
- Use the leaf itself to apply the gel to your keloid scar.
- Repeat the process twice daily.
- It is a perfectly safe treatment so feel free to use it for as long as is necessary.
4. Baking soda
Baking soda is an incredibly useful substance to have on hand. I have been using it to brush my teeth for quite a long time and it has had a wonderful effect. It is cheap, easily available and can help treat a range of inflammatory skin conditions including scars brought about by keloids.
- Add sufficient water to a tablespoon of baking soda to form a nice smooth paste.
- Massage the paste into your keloid scar or scars which should help decrease swelling and redness and maybe even speed up the process of healing.
- Try this remedy at least twice a day for as long as you see fit.
Nearly all honey has antimicrobial qualities that can help us treat cuts and wounds and prevent further infection and certain honeys such as manuka and tualang honey have especially impressive antimicrobial qualities. We have written about both already here at healthyfocus.org; they are certainly more expensive than ordinary honey but when it comes to health, they are definitely worth considering
- Apply your fresh honey to your keloid scar by massaging it in gently.
- This will improve the circulation of blood and help generate new tissue cells.
- Allow the honey to absorb into your keloid scar for at least an hour before washing it away.
- Follow the same procedure twice a day for as long as necessary.
Many people might be offended by the smell of garlic on your person but as with the equally stinky apple cider vinegar, garlic possesses all the right natural properties to heal your skin and prevent your keloid scars from progressing.
- Either use pure garlic oil or crush a few garlic cloves into a fine paste and apply the resulting mixture to your keloid scar.
- Allow it to absorb into your skin for 15 to 30 minutes and then wash it away with soap and water….don’t forget to do this if you would rather not go out stinking of garlic.
- Follow the same procedure twice each day and you might notice the results within a few weeks.
7. Crushed aspirin
This is an interesting remedy that has some excellent testimonials from various online sources. Of course, we associate aspirin as a painkiller but it can also be crushed and used to treat your keloids. The Salicylic Acid can help fade and minimize scars.
- Crush 2 or 3 aspirin tablets then add a drop of water; enough to make a nice smooth paste.
- Then just apply that paste to your keloid scars and let it dry off.
- After a reasonable amount of time rinse it off completely with warm water.
- Repeat the process each day until you hopefully start to see a difference in your scar’s appearance.
We have written several times about the enormous benefits of virgin coconut oil with regard to numerous skin conditions including acne, psoriasis and eczema. Virgin coconut oil contains important and healthful fatty acids such as lineol and lauric acid.
Coconut oil is also a rich source of readily absorbable vitamins and essential minerals. When either taken orally or applied topically, coconut oil is a wonderful natural remedy for a number of complaints. It is easily absorbed into the skin and can both heal and moisturize. It may also be an excellent natural remedy for scars and keloid scars.
- Warm the coconut oil in your hands and then massage it into your keloid scar.
- Allow it to absorb for around 20 to 30 minutes before rinsing it away.
- You can add a drop or 2 of essential oil to your coconut oil for even better results.
- Repeat the process twice daily until your scar has improved or disappeared entirely.
9. Essential oils
There are many essential oils that contain anti-inflammatory and antibacterial qualities suitable for treating skin complaints and to help reduce the appearance of scarring.
Among the very best for this purpose are tea tree oil that is a powerful antimicrobial, helichrysum and lavender. Before applying these oils to your skin it is vital that you dilute them adequately with a base oil and virgin coconut oil is an excellent choice.
We hope that one of these remedies will work for you and they are certainly worth trying. They are safe and natural and the risk of side effects is extremely slight. Of course there are no guarantees and your treatment will not work overnight.
Have a little patience, keep at it and be consistent. With application and a bit of luck, your keloid scar will be a thing of the past.