All skin treatments work in a similar way: removal of a layer of skin so that the new skin can flourish and fill in the wrinkles and crevices. Until recently, the only options to medically treat damaged skin were chemical peels and microdermabrasion. These procedures offer the anti-aging benefits of glowing skin, reduced wrinkles, decreased areas of skin discoloration, and minimized scarring. But these procedures don’t use laser light, and they remove only a thin layer of skin. Laser skin resurfacing uses laser light and treats deeper layers than does microdermabrasion.
One of the most recent innovations in anti-aging remedies has been laser skin resurfacing, which improves the appearance of fine lines or wrinkles, scars, and hyperpigmentation (discolored areas of the skin), primarily around the eyes and mouth. It can also be used to treat large areas of the face.
Laser skin resurfacing has gained popularity recently because of its advantages over alternative approaches that may cause discomfort, bleeding, and bruising, all of which mean a longer recovery time. The result of more youthful-looking skin means laser skin resurfacing can be psychologically rejuvenating as well.
Laser Skin Resurfacing Vs. Other Skin Treatments
When Laser Skin Resurfacing May Not Be Appropriate
People with olive, suntanned, or dark skin are not the best candidates for laser skin resurfacing. Others who do not make good candidates include those who are prone to scarring, are taking certain medications, or have a skin disorder. For example, discoloration must be evaluated to determine if it is the result of natural aging hyperpigmentation (which is treatable), or a more serious medical condition (in which case laser treatment may not be appropriate).
How a Neck Lift is Performed
Dr Pogue performs laser skin resurfacing in his accredited outpatient surgery center attached to his office. Typically you would receive local anesthesia, while you are sedated but awake; however, you might receive general anesthesia for treatment of deeper layers of the skin.
Treatment time ranges from a few minutes to an hour and a half, depending on the amount of resurfacing you need.
Dr. Pogue moves the laser precisely over the area of skin requiring treatment. Depending on the depth of the wrinkle, scar, or discoloration, the laser may be moved over the area repeatedly. The laser penetrates and removes the number of outer skin layers necessary to uncover the layer not affected by imperfections. Once that layer is exposed, healing can begin to rebuild new skin that looks younger and does not have the imperfections.
Your Laser Skin Resurfacing will be performed at Dr. Mark Pogue‘s office in Scottsdale, AZ.
Aftercare for Laser Skin Resurfacing
You will experience some swelling and discomfort after laser resurfacing. This can be controlled with ice packs, ointment and medications prescribed by Dr. Pogue. There may be a red, crusted appearance for 10 or more days.
A thin layer of ointment may be applied to your skin. Dr. Pogue will provide instructions on how to gently wash and care for your healing skin.
During this phase of healing, it is very important that you not pick the crusts off the treated area, or scarring may result. Most patients are free of crusts after 10 days, but redness may persist for several weeks.
Complications and Risks of Laser Skin Resurfacing
Complications in this procedure are rare, but when they occur they may include skin discoloration, burning, or scarring. Laser skin resurfacing does not stop the aging process. Wrinkles, discoloration, and other imperfections can reappear throughout your lifetime.
More Laser Skin Resurfacing Information: American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery