Scarring – what can you do?

Scarring - what can you do?

Scars can be a real problem. They can knock your confidence and cause discomfort and pain. If they are large or on your abdomen, they can also cause issues with posture, fertility, poor digestion, weight gain, poor circulation and increase the chances of cysts.

Despite so many of us having scars, not many people know much about how scar tissue works or how to help their scars heal. Luckily there’s plenty you can do reduce the appearance of scars and improve your health along the way.

The Happy Body Project

The right nutrients

Some nutrients are crucial to good wound healing and healthy skin with better elasticity. This is really important to help prevent and heal scars.

  • Selenium – protects cell tissue and promotes healthy cell regrowth helping to prevent premature aging. Found in Brazil nuts (best source) and tuna as well as other forms of protein
  • Zinc – helps healing and growth of cells and skin elasticity. Prevents poor skin and stretch marks. Found in oysters, meat, shellfish, beans, pumpkins seeds (if taking zinc in a supplement a food source one is crucial)
  • Vitamin E – protects cells and tissues, helps nourishment and elasticity of skin preventing stretch marks and poor wound healing. Found in sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts
  • B vitamins (particularly B1, B2, B3, B5 and B7) – helps develop, heal and maintain skin tissue. Found in Meat, liver, yeast, eggs, peanuts, nuts, seeds, dairy, tuna, salmon, broccoli, legumes, mushrooms, avocado, sweet potato

There are other food sources for these nutrients but I’ve tried to include the best ones.

Massage

Massage is brilliant for breaking down scars. It pulls the scar tissue apart letting the cells return to their normal formation. It also drastically improves the circulation to the area around the scar which is normally pretty poor. Poor blood flow leads to an increase in toxins which means the body pushes fat into the area to protect it as there’s no easy way to flush them out.

This often means scars become raised or the surrounding area becomes hard and it’s difficult to lose weight. Massage improves the blood flow which helps flush out all the toxins and release the fat cells bound up in the scar tissue. All this really improves the appearance of the scar and it’s great for long term health as well. It’s also effective even years after the original wound.

The results are pretty impressive as you can see from the pictures and well-documented too. This study into massaging scars had great results.

All of [the participants] reported a decrease in [scar and abdominal] pain after treatment. Two studies looked at quality of life and function and both saw objective improvements following abdominal adhesion treatment. Collectively, there were also improvements seen in scar mobility, infertility, posture, a reduction in medication, increased pressure tolerance and decreased postoperative ileus.

J Bodyw Mov Ther. 2019 Apr;23(2):262-269. doi: 10.1016/j.jbmt.2018.06.004. Epub 2018 Jun 28.

If you’d like to learn scar tissue massage why not come along to the Love Your Tummy Workshop? This workshop teaches you the massage to help reduce your abdominal scars like c-sections and looks at healing abdominal muscle separation too. Find out more here >

Yoga

Yoga is great for stretching out the skin on all areas of your body which helps the scar tissue break up. It also improves the circulation which helps clear toxins from near the scar tissue which can help prevent a build up of fat around the scar.

If you can’t make it to a class (or even if you can) why not try out a yoga tutorial on YouTube?

I really like yoga with Adriene. Check out her YouTube channel. You can pick videos to suit your time constraints and the area you want to work on.

Jo Medhurst

Jo specialises in treating a range of digestive and gynaecological issues with Abdominal-Sacral massage as well as helping people move past emotional pain and trauma using EFT tapping techniques. She also runs regular workshops on specific symptoms and health issues to teach self-help techniques.

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