Skin tears become more common as we age as our skin thins and becomes more delicate. While skin tears can typically be treated with at-home care, they can be painful and often take weeks to heal. As aesthetic medicine has the capacity to improve skin health, many wonder whether it could be a viable treatment for any skin tear. The truth is, there hasn’t been a lot of research on this topic specifically, but it’s possible that strengthening your skin overall could help prevent future skin tears.
What Are Skin Tears?
A skin tear is an avulsion that occurs when the layers of skin separate and peel. It often happens as a result of bumping something or changing dressings. Skin tears are common in the elderly, but also tend to happen more frequently to those with mobility issues.
There are three categories of skin tears:
- Category 1: A minor skin tear in which the skin stays intact enough for all edges to close. Usually, if you put the flap back in place, this will heal on its own with a bandage or dressing.
- Category 2: The skin flap is damaged and will not close properly.
- Category 3: The skin flap is completely gone, so healing can take a long time.
How Are Skin Tears Typically Treated?
Skin tears are usually not serious if they do not become infected. It is important to act fast in the event of a skin tear, however, to protect yourself from infection.
Clean the skin tear with either sterile water or a saline solution. If you do not have either on hand, a gentle soap can be used on minor skin tears. Then, put the skin back in place as best as you can and apply a bandage over the wound.
Skin tears can take weeks to heal, especially category 3 tears. Be very careful not to bump into the skin tear as this can aggravate the wound, slowing down the healing process.
Seek medical care if you experience signs of infection like fevers, chills, aches, and drainage. In most cases, skin tears will heal on their own with at-home treatment.
Can Aesthetic Medicine Help Skin Tear?
There is unfortunately not a lot of hard evidence on aesthetic medicine’s impact on treating or preventing skin tears. However, in the past aesthetic medicine has had some benefits for similar issues. What aesthetic medicine can do is help the resulting scars be less noticeable and possibly speed up the healing time.
Skin tears are typically related to skin thinning over time. Drier, thinner, and more delicate skin is vastly more prone to tearing. Many forms of aesthetic medicine strengthen the skin.
Dermal fillers often work by stimulating collagen production, which is great for skin health. Radiofrequency treatment also stimulates collagen production and laser resurfacing actually removes the upper layer of skin, so healthy skin grows back in its place. Light therapies destroy bacteria using specific wavelengths, while other wavelengths are used to accelerate wound healing. This is why – in addition to being used for cosmetic purposes – many forms of aesthetic medicine are used to treat more substantial skin conditions. Other therapies such as PRP or stem cell injections may help tears heal and prevent future tears.
However, at the moment there is not a lot of research on the relationship between skin tears and aesthetic medicine. Those who are prone to skin tears may already have sensitive skin, meaning they could be potentially more likely to have complications from things like Botox, dermal fillers, and so on.
Therefore, a consultation with a professional is absolutely vital if you’re considering aesthetic medicine to help with skin tears. A qualified practitioner will carefully go over your medical history and current health to decide whether aesthetic medicine could benefit you. You should also discuss any new procedures with your current practitioner and a dermatologist, especially if you have sensitive skin that is prone to tearing.
Most of the above procedures cannot be performed on those with open wounds. Aesthetic medicine is more likely to be used to prevent future tearing than a way to treat existing skin tears.
In conjunction with aesthetic medicine, many patients will see a practitioner for hormone replacement therapy (HRT). If you are a candidate for this, whether you are male or female, it can improve your skin quality and overall health.
Skin Tear Treatment: The Bottom Line
It is unclear what effects, if any, aesthetic medicine has on skin tears. However, there has been some promising research showing procedures like PRP and light therapy can help with scar prevention and wound healing. As more research is conducted, we may learn more about the potential to use aesthetic medicine for medicinal purposes. At BLUSH Beverly Hills, we have a talented team of medical professionals with decades worth of experience. If you’re interested in consulting about one of the above procedures, reach out here and someone will be in touch shortly