Laser Skin Resurfacing
Laser skin resurfacing is the process of ablating, heating and regenerating skin to leave if looking smoother, younger and healthier. Laser skin resurfacing treatments are designed to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, tighten, tone and improve the overall texture of skin by repairing damage caused by the sun and the natural process of ageing. Laser skin resurfacing can also address pigmentation problems, acne scarring and other types of scarring.
Some of the benefits of laser skin resurfacing are:
- Softening deep wrinkles
- Removing dull skin
- Tightening skin
- Reducing the appearance of scarring
- Reducing or removing fine lines
- Better textured skin
- Reducing or removing acne scarring
- A more youthful look
- Reducing the appearance of sun damage
- Restoring a vibrant complexion
- Removing blotches and blemishes
- Evening out skin colour and tone
- Removing pigmentation
- Helping maintain strong and healthy skin
Undergoing laser skin resurfacing treatments can greatly benefit the appearance and texture of your skin by stimulating collagen production.
Laser skin resurfacing can be used for the treatment of a variety of different skin conditions including:
- Acne scarring and other scarring
- Loose and sagging skin from significant weight loss and ageing
- Skin pigmentation
- Wrinkles and some signs of ageing
- Poor skin tone and texture
- Skin growths such as warts
Acne scars are permanent indentations and textural changes on the skin occurring as a result of acne lesions. Laser skin resurfacing is able to reduce the prevalence of scarring by evening out the surface of your skin, though extensive, deep or pitted acne scarring may require other skin treatments
Laser skin resurfacing can help tighten skin by heating the collagen under the surface of the skin, causing it to contract and tighten. This laser skin treatment also stimulates the growth of new collagen in the treated areas resulting in an immediately noticeable improvement.
Skin pigmentation includes things such as freckles, sun spots, melasma and birthmarks. Laser skin resurfacing treatments are able to treat noticeable differences in skin colour by evening out your skin tone.
Laser skin resurfacing can help with the reduction of skin growths such as warts and benign moles.
Laser skin resurfacing involves first preparing the skin for treatment to improve the results and reduce potential side effects. Your doctor or dermatologist will advise you on the best skin care regimen to use leading up to your treatment.
For example, topical treatments may used to help improve skin turnover and reduce the time of regeneration and reformation of skin (re-epithelialisation). A topical lightening agent may be need to be used for those with darker skin to help reduce the chance of hyperpigmentation (darkening of the treated area). A test patch may be done to determine the energy level needed and gauge the skin’s response to the treatment.
Anti-viral medication or antibiotics may be needed prior to heavier skin treatments to prevent the risk of infection.
Anaesthesia may be used depending on the level of treatment and the equipment that is used. Lighter skin treatments may only require a topical anaesthetic agent applied just before the treatment. Stronger skin treatments may need to use a topical anaesthetic agent as well as injectable anaesthesia. During the laser skin treatment your eyes will be covered.
The treatment area is systematically treated by the laser. Afterwards, the treated area may appear red and swollen and feel quite warm after the treatment.
Carbon dioxide (CO2) lasers have been used for years to resurface skin and are typically used to improve skin tone and texture, reduce or remove sun damage and pigmentation, reduce wrinkles and tighten skin. The laser works by removing the top layer of skin while heating the skin tissue at the same time. The process remodels the skin’s collagen and leads to significantly firmer, smoother and more evenly toned skin.
Laser skin resurfacing treatments are for people who want skin resurfacing on their body, neck or face. The most commonly treated areas are the face, neck and hands.
The ideal candidate for laser skin resurfacing would have non-oily, elastic skin that is not prone to scarring. It is best to be free of any prescription medication or prior health concerns that may affect the outcome or cause any unnecessary risk during the laser skin treatment or recovery period.
Having realistic expectations for the skin resurfacing treatment and reading up on the treatment benefits and limitations are very important. Having realistic expectations of cosmetic treatments is key to feeling satisfied with the outcome.
Laser skin resurfacing can be performed on most skin types from fair to dark, however darker skin tones may experience an increased risk of pigmentation disturbances or blistering with more aggressive treatments. Your skilled, experienced practitioner will be able to advise you.
Laser skin resurfacing is able to treat a number of skin concerns. Most people who have laser skin resurfacing have some concern about the effects ageing or UV exposure has had on their skin. Laser skin resurfacing can be used to reduce wrinkles, sun-induced skin pigmentation, skin sallowness, improve skin texture, acne scarring, other scarring and help tighten skin.
The carbon dioxide laser is able to ablate uneven skin tissue, including certain lumps including benign moles.
It is recommended that those who are pregnant, breastfeeding, prone to keloid scars or are taking certain prescription medication avoid treatment. One of our dermatologists at our Melbourne clinic will be able to advise you on whether you are suitable for laser skin treatment.
Your laser skin treatment will be performed by a dermatologist at our Melbourne clinic and does not require you to stay overnight.
The dermatologist will treat a specified area or your whole face depending on the defined treatment area. Small areas will be numbed with a local anaesthetic cream, while larger areas may require a general anaesthetic. The length of the laser skin treatment will vary depending on the type of treatment.
After the laser skin resurfacing treatment, your practitioner will advise you as to what aftercare you will need to perform.
Full recovery from the most advanced laser skin resurfacing can take up to two weeks depending on the type of treatment and the amount of energy used, which is tailored to your requirements. Non-face areas generally take longer to heal and lower energy levels are used to treat them.
The skin may appear red for a period of time but will usually subside within a week for lower energy skin treatments. The redness from higher level, more aggressive treatments will take longer to fade. Sleeping slightly more upright can help reduce any swelling that may occur around the face or eyes. Some peeling may occur over the first week.
Avoiding prolonged sun exposure is important after the laser skin treatment to reduce the chances of pigmentation or darkening of the treated area. Your dermatologist at our Melbourne clinic will be able to advise you on the appropriate after care for your individual treatment.
Each laser skin treatment takes around 30 minutes depending on the type of treatment you are receiving, and the number of treatments you will need depends on type of skin treatment provided and how severe your condition is.