Not that long ago, lasers were only things seen in science fiction movies, but these days real life lasers are actually more commonly seen in skincare clinics than they are on the big screen. There are many spas and clinics across the country and around the world that use a variety of laser machines to reverse signs of aging, especially wrinkled or sagging skin.
Lasers for skincare treatment really started to gain popularity in the 1990s, with over 170,000 people in the United States alone having laser skin resurfacing done in 1998. Almost 20 years later, those numbers have only increased, and so have the number of laser treatments available.
Understanding How Laser Skin Resurfacing Works
Laser skin resurfacing is most commonly done to the face to remove imperfections and dead skin cells. You see, your outer layer of skin, or epidermis, is mainly made up of dead skin cells. Between those dead cells and other debris that can clog your pores, it can cause havoc on your face. The resurfacing process that is performed by aesthetic-lasers removes that debris and those dead skin cells.
Photo Credit: http://www.medaesthetics.com.au
The interesting and useful thing about aesthetic laser procedures is that they can treat issues that lie below the surface as well. They can do that without the need for things like surgical knives, anesthesia, or any of the other health risks and painful aspects you might experience from surgery. Instead, they “burn” the skin in a controlled way to get rid of visible imperfections or they use certain frequencies to treat lower skin layers while leaving surface skin intact. Either way the benefits are clear and the risks are minimal.
How Lasers Interact with Collagen in Skin Cells
Collagen is a protein that is a major component that holds skin cells together. When you have less collagen, your skin can droop, sag, and wrinkle. Lasers do two things that can help collagen to keep your skin tight. The first is that an aesthetic laser treatment can cause existing collagen to tighten up. The second is that many of those same treatments can help to get your body to make more collagen, which will strengthen and tighten your skin cells even more.
How Laser Treatments Are Controlled
It’s important to note that aesthetic laser treatments themselves are not always as well-governed as you might think. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) actually has to approve of the lasers themselves, but the treatments and who can perform them is not governed as well. That’s why it is up to you to locate a clinic that is staffed by experts that have the proper training and credentials and make sure you feel comfortable at that clinic.
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Other Things to Know About Using Lasers to Treat Your Skin
There are a couple other things you need to know about laser treatments. One is that you can’t expect to see results right away. If you have a laser skin resurfacing procedure done, it might take up to 10 days for your skin to heal. It could also take even longer for your body’s increased collagen production to show up in the form of tightened skin, and you may even need multiple laser treatment appointments.
The second thing you need to understand is that, even though the process itself may take less than an hour, the recovery can take a while. You will need to avoid direct sunlight, makeup, and most skin products for over a week after the procedure is done in order to avoid complications. But, if you take care of your skin as directed, you should see quite a bit of difference once your skin recovers.