Why Self-harm Scars are Permanent and Catch the Eye?
Cutting the skin with a sharp object leaves permanent scars. These cut scars are easily recognized since the color and texture of the scars are different than the surrounding intact skin. To understand why these scars are permanent and hard to get rid of them, the underlying mechanism of wound healing process of skin should be known.
Repair of a damaged tissue is achieved either by “regeneration” or “reparation” processes. In the regeneration process the missing tissue is replaced by identical missing cells and cellular products. So, the aesthetic result of a regeneration process will be perfect in terms of color and texture and it can not be differentiated from the original appearance. On the other hand, missing cells and tissue components are not replaced with identical ones in reparation process. The tissue integrity is achieved by producing a substance which is different than the missing tissue.
When the integrity of the human skin is broken down with a sharp instrument, the wound heals using a “reparation process”. The dermal fibroblasts synthesize collagen and fill the gap between the wound edges. The epidermal cells replicate and cover the collagen filled wound. Since the epidermal layer is transparent the color and texture of the collagen is perceived by the human eye. We call this new repaired tissue as “scar”. Dermal layer of human skin includes blood vessels, nerve endings, hair follicles and different cells and cell products. However, these tissue ingredients are not included in a collagen filled scar. That’s why the scar tissue is different than the surrounding intact skin in terms of color and texture and that’s why the scar is permanent unfortunately.