No matter what type of technique is used, there is a risk of bad scar tissue forming when the intent to form good scar tissue. It is important to consult with an expert in skin resurfacing such as a dermatologist or plastic surgeon.
The first step when thinking about skin resurfacing is to consult with a professional. When you schedule a consultation you will have the opportunity to show the dermatologist the problems and discuss the treatment process and what to expect. This gives the doctor an idea of what you want to accomplish and to ensure that your goals are realistic.
Just like any other type of procedure, the doctor will ask about your medical history including allergies, medications you’re taking ( including topical skin creams) and previous surgeries or therapies. It is important to be as thorough and detailed as possible to avoid a potentially bad outcome. The doctor needs to know everything about you to determine if this procedure is appropriate for you.
The techniques used for skin resurfacing include chemical peels, laser resurfacing, and dermabrasion. The basic principle is the same for all three techniques; you cause minor injury to the skin through needling or buffing and as it heals, it reveals the new skin underneath. Any time you get the smallest of injuries such as a cut on your finger or little scrape, the body reacts by sending antibodies and healing properties to the surface of the skin to aid healing. It works off this basic principle. Your doctor will contact your insurance provider to see if this procedure is covered. Some policies do not cover certain procedures.
Dermabrasion involves a technique to remove the very top layer of skin. When you skin your knee you scrape the top layer of skin. It is similar to this in that the top layer of skin is gently scraped to remove dead skin cells and encourage healing. This treatment is frequently used to improve the appearance of acne scars and uneven skin pigment.
A chemical peel involves applying a chemical solution to an area of the face. There are different strengths of solutions and techniques for application. The doctor monitors the skin for changes. Most often, the solution used is a type of Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) that includes glycolic acid. These treatments improve the appearance of the skin over time. This also works well for reducing brown spots and fine lines.
Treatments are performed in the doctor’s office without the need for anesthesia. Since no anesthesia is used, you can drive yourself home after the procedure. You may experience a little skin tingling or stinging. The dermatologist will recommend products to use for maintaining skin tone at home.
Laser skin resurfacing has two different techniques that are used. The first one is similar to dermabrasion and chemical peels in that it removes the outer layer of skin. The second technique is called fractional resurfacing and uses a laser to make tiny holes in the skin. The downside to this technique is that it is harder to control the depth of penetration for facial skin.
Skin resurfacing can change and improve the appearance of the skin with continued treatments.
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