When you walk past a mirror, do you ever stop and do a double take?
Perhaps your face is worn with lines from those wonderful memories that still make you smile, or from all those worries that left their mark. Do you wear them as a badge, a medal of honor for a life well-lived? Or do you want to defy the aging process?
If you’re more interested in fighting (or hiding) the signs of aging, one option you might consider is laser skin resurfacing. This procedure aims a light beam at various layers of the skin to try to repair the appearance of wrinkles, discolorations, scars or other age spots. After the procedure, you could be left with younger, smoother looking skin.
There are two types of lasers typically used in laser skin resurfacing: ablative and non-ablative. Ablative lasers remove the surface of the skin by burning the epidermal layer down to the next level, the dermis. The body responds during the healing process by producing more collagen, which generates new layers of skin that are stronger and, ideally, look younger.
Non-ablative lasers can focus specifically on the tissue underneath the skin, using the laser wavelengths to target those spots without harming the surface. In place of the damaged skin, younger-looking and clearer skin develop. Also, because the laser is precise, you’ll likely face a shorter recovery time than with ablative laser treatments.
Laser treatment is a newer procedure, but it has support because it avoids many of the harsh chemicals or treatments that older ablative methods use. Read on to see whether it could give you the skin you long for and how effective it is in comparison with other skin resurfacing processes.
EFFECTIVENESS OF LASER SKIN RESURFACING
Laser skin resurfacing — sometimes referred to as a type of skin rejuvenation — is thought to be effective in improving the appearance of skin. Skin tone and type, ethnicity, existing skin damage, and skin health are factors that contribute to the level of effectiveness one can expect from laser skin resurfacing. Also, aestheticians previous experience with the technique and the facilities both can affect the results. It’s the patient’s responsibility to ask questions and become educated about the procedure beforehand.
Not everyone is a candidate for laser skin resurfacing. Those with dark complexions might want to avoid the procedure because the facial skin typically will be lighter than the rest of their body for up to a year. If you scar easily or are on medication, that could also have an effect.
After the treatment, the skin might be bright pink for a few days and will likely be sensitive to direct sun. We recommend using at least an SPF 30 sunscreen after any laser skin treatment.
More than one treatment might be recommended, and the procedure could need to be repeated as you age and acquire new facial lines.