LASER SKIN RESURFACING
Laser skin resurfacing offers a safe and effective method to remove surface imperfections, shrink pores, lighten and diminish or remove pigment, and reduce lines and wrinkles; the result is a more youthful appearance of the skin. It can accurately target very specific skin problems by varying the laser’s intensity and color, helping to stimulate the regeneration of new collagen and leaving smoother, healthier looking skin.
What can lasers help me improve?
Your skin spends all day every day protecting your body from the elements. Over the years, the toll of being the first line of defense against the sun, wind, toxins, UV rays, and cigarette smoke, not to mention stress and poor nutrition, begins to show. The skin loses the smoothness and resilience it once had, and fine lines appear near the eyes, the mouth, the forehead, and across the cheeks. During a laser skin resurfacing session, we employ a specialized laser that emits an intense beam of energy that heats the skin. As the beam is guided over damaged and wrinkled skin, the outer layers peel away. Laser skin resurfacing can help improve:
- Restore a “rosy” glow to a yellowish or sallow gray complexion
- Dramatically reduce deep lines around the mouth, eyes and cheeks
- Minimize pores and smooth skin texture
- Virtually erase sun-induced brown spots and acne scars
- Smooth “hills and valleys” caused by chicken pox scars
Is there any recovery after laser resurfacing?
There is little to no downtime. Initially, redness or a mild sunburn sensation is expected. This generally resolves in 24 hours. Very quickly, you will notice a significant improvement in your skin quality and appearance with subtle signs of continuing improvement over the following weeks.
- Initial Consultation
- Procedure: 30-45 minutes
- Sessions: Dependent upon treatment plan; yearly maintenance
- Recovery Time: None
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it painful?
.The procedure feels like warm pinpricks on the skin and your face will feel very warm. The procedure is typically well tolerated.
What are the side effects?
Clients may experience some minor redness and swelling post-treatment. Some patients can also experience mild acne breakouts post-treatment.
How many treatments are needed and how long will it last?
We typically recommend a series of 3 treatments spaced 1 month apart. Each treatment builds on itself. You will continue to see improvement for a few months after the 3rd treatment. If patients take care of their skin by using sunscreen and keeping up the results with topical retinoids, the effects of the treatment can be extended. Often we will recommend coming in for a maintenance treatment once a year for touch up treatments. We are constantly aging, so with any type of anti-aging treatment there will be maintenance required to keep up the results.
How does laser skin resurfacing work?
The treatment creates heated columns in the skin that stimulate the body’s healing processes, part of which involves collagen production around the treated areas. This collagen stimulation strengthens the dermis and softens the highs & lows of the skin, i.e. wrinkles or acne scars..
Can laser skin resurfacing be combined with other procedures?
Laser skin resurfacing can be combined with other cosmetic procedures to help reach your skin rejuvenation goals. Treatment with topical retinoids is recommended to maintain the results from your laser skin resurfacing treatment. Also, Botox and dermal filler treatments can be incorporated to address wrinkles and volume loss to the face. Depending on your individual goals, our providers can design a treatment plan to best address your needs.
Can laser resurfacing remove dark spots and acne scars?
Acne scars and large pores can both be improved with laser resurfacing. Acne scars can range in appearance. Most commonly they are raised red or pink scars, small holes in the skin that are known as “ice pick” scars, or as depressed or uneven areas of the face. Erbium and Carbon Dioxide laser resurfacing are two of the more traditional acne treatments, and while they can produce favorable results, they do require a lot of post procedure downtime and several days of post-treatment care. Advances in technology have now given us a wide range of non-ablative lasers to treat these types of scars. The downtime involved with these types of devices is short, as they resurface scars gradually.
Large pores can also be improved with this type of laser skin resurfacing. With the increase in collagen production, pore visibility can be decreased. This outcome may be subtle, so patients should discuss their goals with their provider to determine whether this treatment will provide the desired level of improvement.
What is the recovery?
Immediately post-treatment, your skin will appear swollen and red, and you will feel tightness of the skin. It is recommended that you ice the treated area for 30 minutes following the treatment. Glycolic, salicylic acid, and topical vitamin A derivative creams will need to be avoided for 2-3 days. You should only wash with cold or warm water for 2-3 as well, as hot water should be avoided on the treated area. Around 3 days after the treatment, your skin may feel very dry, so we suggest using a hydrating moisturizer that won’t cause any irritations. In 1-2 weeks, patients should expect the treated area to be fully healed.*
What are the risks of laser skin resurfacing?
- Infection. Nonablative laser resurfacing can cause a flare-up of the herpes virus.
- Changes in skin color. If you have tanned or darker skin, nonablative laser resurfacing can cause your skin to become temporarily darker (hyperpigmentation).
- Mild swelling and redness. Swelling and redness typically last only hours or days.
- Blistering and scarring. Rarely, nonablative laser resurfacing can cause blistering and scarring.