Excess facial and body hair can affect how we feel, social interaction, what we wear and what we do.
Options for camouflaging or removing unwanted hair include plucking, shaving, bleaching, applying creams, and epilation (using a device that pulls out multiple hairs at once).
Longer-term options include electrolysis (using an electrical current to destroy individual hair follicles) and laser therapy.
Lasers emit light with a specific monochromatic wavelength.When aimed at the skin, the energy from the light is transferred to the skin and hair pigment melanin.This heats up and damages surrounding tissue.
But to permanently remove hair and minimize damage to surrounding tissue, the laser needs to target specific cells.These are hair follicle stem cells, located in the part of the hair called the hair bulge.
Since the surface of the skin also contains melanin and we want to avoid harming them, shave carefully before treatment.
Laser treatments can permanently reduce hair density or permanently remove excess hair.
A permanent reduction in hair density means that some hair will regrow after a session, and the patient will require ongoing laser treatment.
Permanent hair removal means that the hair in the treated area does not regrow after one session and does not require ongoing laser treatment.
However, if you have gray hair without melanin hyperpigmentation, the currently available lasers won’t work as well.
The number of treatments you need depends on your Fitzpatrick skin type.This categorizes your skin based on color, sensitivity to sunlight and likelihood of tanning.
Pale or white skin, burns easily, rarely tans (Fitzpatrick types 1 and 2) People with dark hair can usually achieve permanent hair removal with 4-6 treatments every 4-6 weeks.People with fair hair can usually only achieve permanent hair loss and may require 6-12 treatments at monthly intervals after the initial course of treatment.
Light brown skin, which sometimes burns, slowly turns light brown (type 3) People with dark hair can usually achieve permanent hair removal with 6-10 treatments every 4-6 weeks.People with fair hair usually only achieve permanent hair loss and may need to repeat the treatment 3-6 times a month after the initial treatment.
People with medium to dark brown skin, rarely burns, tanned or medium brown (types 4 and 5) dark hair can usually achieve permanent hair loss with 6-10 treatments every 4-6 weeks.Maintenance usually requires 3-6 months of repeated treatments.Blondes are less likely to respond.
You will also feel some pain during treatment, especially the first few times.This is mainly due to not removing all hair from the area to be treated prior to surgery.Hairs missed during shaving absorb the laser energy and heat the surface of the skin.Repeated treatment regularly can reduce pain.
Your skin will feel hot 15-30 minutes after the laser treatment.Redness and swelling may occur for up to 24 hours.
More serious side effects include blisters, hyper- or hypopigmentation of the skin, or permanent scarring.
These usually happen to people who have recently tanned and haven’t adjusted their laser settings.Alternatively, these side effects can occur when patients take medications that affect the skin’s response to sunlight.
Lasers suitable for hair removal include: long-pulse ruby lasers, long-pulse alexandrite lasers, long-pulse diode lasers, and long-pulse Nd:YAG lasers.
Intense pulsed light (IPL) devices are not laser devices, but flashlights that emit multiple wavelengths of light simultaneously.They work similarly to lasers, albeit less effectively and are far less likely to permanently remove hair.
To minimize the risk of damage to the melanin-producing cells on the skin’s surface, the choice of laser and how it is used can be matched to your skin type.
People with fair skin and dark hair can use IPL devices, alexandrite lasers, or diode lasers; people with dark skin and dark hair can use Nd:YAG or diode lasers; people with blond or red hair can use diode lasers.
To control the spread of heat and unnecessary tissue damage, short laser pulses are used.The energy of the laser has also been adjusted: it needs to be high enough to damage the bulge cells, but not so high that it causes discomfort or burns.
Post time: Jun-21-2022