Laser skin lightening (or whitening) is a medical procedure in which concentrated beams of short pulsed light are cast upon the targeted areas of skin to remove unwanted, irregular, and damaged skin. The process stimulates the new growth of fresh skin cells which ultimately leads to lighter skin tones. The procedure takes anywhere between 30 minutes and 2 hours.
This laser skin treatment is widely used to treat skin conditions such as wrinkles, acne scars and hyperpigmentation problems such as uneven skin tones (due to overproduction of melanin), melasma, chloasma, liver spots and age spots and also the discolouration issues.
History of Laser Skin Lightening
The laser skin whitening procedure was started in early 1980s with the inception of the carbon dioxide (CO2) lasers which were used for the first time to deliver many light beams into the skin. With the number of harmful side effects arising from this procedure, the methodology was modified.
A new range of erbium lasers and (CO2) lasers were used with the ability to deliver very short and “quick-pulse “ of light energy to the skin and in a very controlled manner.
Preparation for the Laser Skin Whitening Treatment
To ensure that your skin is ready for treatment, the surgeon or dermatologist will start you off on a pre-treatment regiment. This is usually done 6 weeks in advance. To know more information on Facial Rejuvination check Sccaudi
Typically you will be required to use a range of skin care products that are meant to nourish you skin. These are products customized to suit your specific type of skin to reduce possible complications and get the best out of your laser whitening.
Topical creams will be prescribed to aid in unclogging pores and boost collagen production in your skin. They also speed up the rate of cells turnover for a healthier epidermal and dermal layer. Such creams, if applied as per instruction will result to skin improvement in as little as 4 weeks.
Smoking should be stopped at least 2 weeks before the procedure. The reason being it dries out the skin which can lead to less than ideal treatment results. A dry skin heals slower which increases the possibility of post-treatment infection. With that in mind, you should also not smoke for at least 2 weeks after the procedure.
Blood thinning medication should be stopped 6 weeks to the treatment. These medications prevent blood from clotting which can lengthen the healing process.
Such include anticoagulants like heparin,rivaroxaban and apixaban. Others like aspirin and tirofiban are antiplatelet agents; which inhibit platelets aggregation. Some of the drugs may also interact adversely with post treatment medication.
You will also be advised to decrease or stop alcohol consumption 6 weeks before the treatment. Sun exposure should also be kept at a minimum to reduce skin’s photosensitivity to the lasers. Prophylactic antivirals and antibiotics may also be prescribed if you have a history of cold sores or herpes.
Expert Tip: Preoperative measures are just as important as the procedure itself hence you should go to a reputable laser clinic. Most treatments that go wrong are as a result of rushed procedures on un-ready skin.
Recovery time after Laser Skin Whitening
After laser treatment, the skin can react in numerous ways. Most people get a mild tingling sensation, like sunburns, after the treatment.
The skin may also show signs of redness and swelling after the procedure. Itching or stinging are also common for the first couple of days. In case of blondes and redheads, the redness tends to last longer.
If you are going for a laser treatment, then you should be ready to experience a long recovery time and talk to your surgeon regarding the same.
The time will vary based on the type of treatment. Simple treatments just need a day or two to settle down. But if you go for a full facial treatment, it involves having a dressing applied on the targeted skin area which needs to be kept for 7-21 days.
Also, aggressive treatments can lead the skin to become raw. Blisters may appear, and sometimes you may notice a yellow liquid oozing out from the targeted areas and forming a crust. Never try to pick at the crusts as you may end up with deep scarring.
Give it some time (5 days to a week), and you notice the crust peeling off and new rejuvenating skin coming up in the treated areas. The skin will also lighten over a period. You might experience some extra sensitivity to light right after the treatment. It is recommended that you put on sunscreen every day and minimize sun exposure.
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