Benefits of Laser Hair Removal
Removing unwanted hair is an effort; it leaves you with bumps, burns, or the hassles of repeated shaving, tweezing, or waxing. Hence, laser hair removal may be an option worth considering.
Before undergoing laser hair removal, prior checking of credentials of the doctor and hospital are essential.
Laser hair removal is a technique that uses beams of highly concentrated light to penetrate the hair follicles. The light is absorbed by pigment in the hair follicles and destroys the hair within the follicle.
Lasers are useful for removing unwanted hair from the face, leg, arm, underarm, and bikini line as well as other areas where unsightly hair is a problem.
Benefits of laser hair removal include:
- Precision: Lasers can selectively target dark, coarse hairs while leaving the surrounding skin undamaged.
- Speed: Each pulse of the laser takes a fraction of a second and can treat many hairs at the same time. The laser can treat an area approximately the size of a quarter every second. Small areas such as the upper lip can be treated in less than a minute, and large areas, such as the back or legs, may take up to an hour.
- Predictability: Ninety percent of patients have permanent hair loss after an average of three to five sessions.
How to Prepare for Laser Hair Removal
Laser hair removal is a medical procedure that requires training to perform and carries potential risks. Prior to having laser hair removal, you should thoroughly check the credentials of the doctor performing the procedure and the hospital where you are planning to avail the service.
Once you have planned laser hair removal, you should limit plucking, waxing, and electrolysis for six weeks before treatment. That's because the laser targets the hairs' roots, which are temporarily removed by waxing or plucking. You should also avoid sun exposure for six weeks before and after treatment. Sun exposure decreases the effectiveness of laser hair removal and increases the risk of complications following treatment.
What to Expect During Laser Hair Removal
Just before the procedure, the hair that will be undergoing treatment will be trimmed to just a few millimeters above the skin surface, and the laser equipment will be adjusted according to the color, thickness, and location of the hair being treated, as well as your skin color.
Depending on the laser or light source used, doctor will provide you appropriate eye protection wear. The outer layers of the skin will be necessarily protected with a cold gel or special cooling device. This will help the laser light penetrate the skin.
Next, a pulse of light will be given to the treatment area and the area will be watched for several minutes to make sure the optimal parameters were used and to check for adverse reactions before proceeding. Depending on the area being treated, treatment time may range from 15 minutes to an hour. When the procedure is completed, you may be given ice packs or anti-inflammatory creams or lotion, or water to relieve any discomfort. You may be scheduled for your next treatment four to six weeks later. Treatments will be repeated until hair growth stops.
After treatment, the treated area of your skin will look and feel much like it is sunburned for a day or two. Cool compresses and moisturizers may help. Over the next months, the treated hair will fall out. Wearing sunscreen for the following months will help prevent temporary changes in the color of the treated skin. Side effects like swelling and redness may take place though permanent scarring or changes in skin color are rare.
Costs of laser hair removal vary widely, depending on a number of factors like size of the area being treated and time required for treatment and number of treatments required
Because each person's pattern of hair growth is unique, it is difficult to predict exactly how many treatments will be needed to completely get rid of unwanted hair or the exact cost of doing so. For a better idea of the cost for your particular hair problem, you should schedule a consultation with a doctor, who must be an expert dermatologist with skill and experience in laser skin treatment.