About Laser Skin Resurfacing
Laser skin resurfacing at RiverSong Plastic Surgery is a nonsurgical cosmetic procedure that uses pulsating beams of light to eliminate dead and damaged skin layers. This treatment is used for addressing facial lines and wrinkles and for minimizing skin flaws, including acne scars, pigmentation, and other issues. Also known as a laser peel, laser skin resurfacing is an ideal procedure for patients desiring softer, clearer, youthful-looking skin. Depending on the condition of the skin type, the laser may be adjusted accordingly. There is some downtime required with most laser skin resurfacing facials. Any concerns or questions can be discussed with our experienced aesthetician during your skin assessment and consultation.
Types of Laser Treatments
There are many types of laser treatments that can be used to address different skin imperfections. It is common for sublative and fractional laser treatments to be recommended, though ablative and non-ablative laser treatments are also available and applicable in certain situations. Here is a brief overview of each type of treatment:
- Sublative Laser Treatments
Sublative lasers use the power of fractionated bi-polar radiofrequency to penetrate the skin and stimulate collagen production without interrupting or injuring the skin's surface. RiverSong Plastic Surgery utilizes elosPlus and Syneron Candela technologies to perform sublative laser treatments.
- Fractional Laser Treatments
Fractional lasers create small holes in the deeper layers of the skin, stimulating the skin's self-healing process to create firmer skin. Fractional lasers may also be used to help fine lines, acne scarring, sun damage, and pigmentation issues. Our aesthetician employs the help of CO2RE, Fractional CO2, and Syneron Candela technologies to perform these treatments.
- Ablative Laser Treatments
Ablative lasers vaporize the top layer of the skin to address sun damage, blemishes, scars, and wrinkles. This treatment can be slow and uncomfortable with a long recovery time. However, results are typically beautiful and lasting.
- Non-ablative Laser Treatments
A less invasive option when compared to ablative treatment, non-ablative lasers work beneath the skin to improve skin tone and texture without causing the level of discomfort or recovery that is required when other options are chosen.
If you are unhappy with the appearance of your skin, there are multiple factors to think about when selecting which laser peel procedure is right for your needs. If you have skin damaged by the sun, acne scars, age spots, wrinkles and fine lines, redness, or pigmentation troubles, a laser peel treatment can be helpful to improve these complexion blemishes. In addition, a laser peel works well for those who have scaly patches, rough texture, or other irregularities. Additionally, it is important to know that there is downtime associated with these laser treatments. Some patients, depending on the condition of their skin, may need up to 2 – 3 weeks for their skin to normalize.
Before you have a deeper or more intense laser peel treatment, you may be asked to use a retinoid product for a few weeks prior. This helps prepare the skin for more effective results. Medication will be suggested prior to the treatment to help lessen pain and increase comfort during your session. If your skin needs mild correction, a topical anesthetic will be used to numb certain areas where the laser will target. For the full face or more intense laser treatments, some kind of sedation may be required. During the procedure, you will relax in our treatment chair while the laser glides over the skin, precisely targeting the needed surfaces for rejuvenation.
What to Expect
Following lighter peels, a healing ointment will be applied to the skin before you return home to recover. The skin will appear red, and there will be some irritation and swelling. This should subside within a couple of days and the peeling process will last over a 3 – 5-day timeframe. If you are getting a more intense laser treatment, your recovery time will last longer. The treated areas will most likely be covered by dressings and the swelling, burning, and irritation symptoms will be stronger. Medication can be prescribed to lessen these side effects. The recovery period associated with a deeper laser treatment can last 2 – 3 weeks. All patients should minimize their sun exposure after their laser peel and apply sun protection throughout the day. For all laser peel treatments, the skin will naturally flake, crust, and peel away. It is crucial to avoid interfering with the healing process to evade scarring and to protect your skin from environmental exposure. Once the peeling process has been completed, your skin will feel softer while looking clearer, rejuvenated, and younger.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much does laser skin resurfacing cost?
Laser resurfacing costs are based on the treatment you get. At your consultation, our aesthetician will ask about your skin problems and goals before reviewing the types of resurfacing treatments. Then, she can help you decide on your resurfacing method and discuss costs. RiverSong Plastic Surgery often runs treatment specials and packages so ask about current specials during your consultation.
What's the best type of resurfacing for me?
Our aesthetician will help you decide which resurfacing treatment will best meet your needs and goals during your consultation. The best treatment for you will depend on the condition of your skin, your skin issues, and how deep you want your treatment to go. How long you are willing to give your recovery may also be a deciding factor when choosing your treatment type. When in doubt, it's best to select a lighter treatment to see how you like your results and adjust as needed for your next treatment.
How can I help my skin recover after a resurfacing treatment?
At the time of your appointment, our aesthetician will discuss how you can help your skin heal after a treatment. The most important lesson is to not pick or peel your skin, as this could create lasting damage including scars. You should skip all hair removal methods in the treatment area, which means no shaving, waxing, or depilatory creams. We will recommend an ointment to help soothe and heal your skin.
Should I get laser skin resurfacing, a chemical peel, or dermabrasion?
After listening to your concerns, Riversong Plastic Surgery's aesthetician will help you decide if laser skin resurfacing, a chemical peel, or dermabrasion treatment will achieve your goals. While they all improve the surface of the skin, each has benefits and drawbacks. During your consultation, we can review each option and make a recommendation for your treatment.
How often should I get laser resurfacing treatments?
Depending on the resurfacing option selected for your treatment, you may need to wait several weeks or even months between appointments. Deeper treatments will provide longer-lasting results but will require a lengthy recovery period. You should speak with our aesthetician about how often you are willing to come back for treatments so she can take this into account when choosing a type of resurfacing during your consultation.
A Softer, Clearer Complexion
Laser skin resurfacing treatment offers amazing results if you want a smoother, younger-looking complexion. If you are curious about a laser treatment and would like to learn more about them as well as the other nonsurgical procedures RiverSong Plastic Surgery offers, we invite you to call our office in Newburyport, MA today to schedule your consultation.