How Does Laser Hair Removal Work?
Laser hair removal, the safe and effective permanent removal of unwanted body and facial hair using a handheld laser, either by a dermatologist, or at home, has become a common elective procedure in the United States. Laser hair removal uses highly concentrated beams of light to penetrate the follicles that generate unwanted hair, and to destroy the hair at the source.
There are a wide variety of devices that have been developed for use by dermatologists and for in-home use, and contemporary advances in design have made the procedure safer for people with darker skin tones, looking to remove unwanted hair.
Why Choose Laser Hair Removal?
Laser hair removal can be highly effective in removing unwanted hair, whether it stems from a condition that causes unwanted hair growth on the body or face, or if the person is simply looking to renew their overall appearance. Getting rid of unwanted hair typically takes several ongoing treatments over a period of time, in order to get results.
All devices that are currently approved for hair removal, either in clinical settings or in the home, have been approved for permanent hair reduction over time. Some users and patients report permanent hair reduction lasting a great many years, while other individuals may require follow-up treatments over time to maintain the desired amount of unwanted hair reduction.
At this time, there is no proven way to predict how any individual’s hair will respond to laser hair removal treatment. Some require fewer treatments than others, and some report longer-lasting effects than others.
Possible Side Effects and Risks of Laser Hair Removal
Laser hair removal is a medical procedure, whether it is accomplished using an FDA-approved at-home medical device, or in a dermatologist’s office under the hand of trained medical personnel. As a medical procedure, it comes with some potential side effects and risks.
Some have reported mild reddening of the skin after their first treatment, which lessens after the first 24 hours. Many report the re-growth of lighter, finer hair, at the two-to-three month mark, but with a permanent reduction of the thickness and darkness of hair growing back.
Additional risks associated with both the dermatological procedure and at-home treatment include pain, blistering of the skin, burns, issues developing with skin pigmentation, and some scarring. It is important to note that with proper skin preparation and aftercare, the potential for the development of these issues should be greatly reduced.
Preparation and Aftercare
Before starting laser hair removal, it is important that you acquaint yourself with the possible outcomes and risks of the procedure. You should also avoid tanning beds, sunbathing or anything that could darken your skin pigment, such as waxing, collagen injections, or any chemical peels.
It’s also import to avoid any anti-inflammatory drugs and supplements, including aspirin, prior to the procedure to reduce the chance of bleeding due to thinned blood. Additionally, you should avoid using deodorants, perfumes or any other potential skin irritants on the treated area both before and after the procedure.
Following laser hair removal, you should understand that some redness and swelling of the hair follicles is normal, as is minor pain and discomfort, which can easily be treated with over the counter remedies. The use of a topical antiseptic ointment or cream is recommended, as is the avoidance of direct sun exposure for at least a week.
If you are planning to conduct laser hair removal at home, make sure to check out the Tria Laser 4X, the first and only FDA-cleared hair removal laser for in-home use. It uses the same laser technology used by the majority of dermatologists, with all the convenience of treating yourself at home!