Laser Pigmentation Removal
- What is IPL, VPL laser pigmentation treatment?
- What happens during the IPL, VPL laser pigmentation treatment?
- Are there any contraindications for IPL, VPL or laser pigmentation treatment?
- How many VPL laser pigmentation treatments are recommended?
- What should I do before and after IPL, VPL laser treatment?
- Are there any side effects for VPL laser pigmentation treatment?
We all love to spend time outdoors, but as we get older excess pigmentation in the form of age spots, sun spots or freckles can develop. Excessive exposure to sunlight, environmental factors, hormones, injuries, medications, acne or your skin type may all contribute to the development of dark spots, hyper pigmentation and freckles. In addition, brown patches known as melasma can appear on the face due to hormonal changes during pregnancy. Usually first noticeable on the hands, your face, neck and décolleté are also likely to show signs of ageing because they receive so much sun exposure. (Note: if hyper pigmentation is found in areas not normally exposed to the sun, it’s advisable to have this checked out by a doctor) Unlike laser for pigmentation removal treatment and chemical peels which can cause scarring, VPL Laser pigmentation treatments are safe and non-invasive and work by inducing a healing response which lightens the appearance of pigmented skin without damaging it at Medix Skincare & Laser Clinic Melbourne.
What is IPL, VPL laser pigmentation treatment?
At Medix skincare and Laser clinic, Melbourne we use the latest UltraPlus VPL laser system, which is designed so that each light pulse consists of a sequence of rapid shorter pulses. These variable pulses ensure controlled absorption of laser light by the melanin in the skin, while the surrounding skin remains cool. The excess melanin in the hyper-pigmented area is broken down and cleared away by the waste disposal system of the body. VPL Laser produces excellent results for the face, hands and décolleté. Our sun damage treatment not only clears pigmentation and thread veins, but will also improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. This stimulates the skin to go into “repair mode” whereby the increase in blood flow to the region brings in fresh supplies of oxygen and nutrients to the cells, and stimulates the production of collagen.
What happens during IPL, VPL laser pigmentation treatment?
Written consent from a doctor is essential before commencing the treatment. First, the treated area is cleared of make-up and hairs. A cooling gel is then applied in order to provide the required optical coupling and to maintain cooling on the skin being treated. The VPL Laser hand piece is passed over the skin of the targeted area with no pressure. During the skin pigmentation treatment, a bright light of the laser is released. This light travels through the skin and heats the dermal tissues without disruption or removal of the outer epidermal layers of the skin. This results in a visible reduction in unwanted pigmentation. The longer wavelengths of the VPL laser light penetrate deeply to stimulate the cells to produce extra collagen, leading to a tightening of overly pigmented areas. Depending on your skin sensitivity you may experience a slight stinging sensation in the area treated during the procedure, but there is far less discomfort than with laser or IPL treatments. Since the light is strongly absorbed by the melanin in the epidermis, this treatment is only suitable for people with skin types 1-4 with no significant tan. If the pigment in question is due to sun damage, as on the backs of the hands and the décolleté, then it should easily respond, along with superficial freckles. Pigment sitting deeper in the dermis is not likely to respond. The hands, arms and décolleté usually respond well since the cause of the pigment is almost always sun damage. After about half an hour the treated areas will start to darken. By 24 hours they will turn even darker and may crust. Then the treated areas will gradually fade or flake until the pigments have disappeared or lightened. The area is renewed after 10-14 days.
Are there any contraindications for VPL or laser treatment?
Taking Accutane or similar medication
Taking blood thinning medication
Pregnancy or breast feeding during the first few months
Any injectable or fillers in the last 72 hours
Cold sore or fever blister without premedication
Facial peels or waxing within 7 to 14 days
Having type I diabetes
Recent sun exposure or spray tanning or solarium
Wearing a pacemaker
Lack of skin temperature
How many VPL laser pigmentation treatments are recommended?
Sometimes one session is sufficient, but two or three may be required at least 4 weeks apart.
What should I do before and after VPL laser pigmentation treatment?
A doctor’s written consent is required before the treatment can be given.
Avoid direct sun exposure, spray tanning or sun beds for 6 weeks before and after the treatment and if you will be exposed to the sun, a high SPF sunscreen should be applied.
Avoid waxing or peeling or any kind of skin resurfacing for 2-3 weeks before and after treatment.
Don’t do any heavy or sweaty workouts within 24 hours of the treatment.
Don’t have hot shower for 24 hours, and treated areas should be cared for by gentle washing with soap and water without scrubbing or rubbing.
Don’t scratch or pick the area as it could cause scars.
Don’t apply any make-up until swelling and discomfort is resolved.
Don’t do the dishes for 3-4 days after treating the hands and wear cotton gloves for driving.
Are there any side effects for VPL laser treatment?
The pigmented areas will darken immediately or during the first few hours, and will remain dark for a few days before being shed from the skin surface. Following your treatment you may feel quite sunburnt and the treated area may be red for up to several hours. Some clients may experience swelling which goes away within a few days. Treated pigmented areas may develop a crust, which can last from 3 days to 2-3 weeks. A cool compress immediately after treatment will relieve any swelling or burnt feeling. Applying a cooling gel such as Aloe Vera and Tea Tree can help but don’t use any anti-inflammatory properties which could interfere with the treatment. Taking antioxidants and vitamins A, E and C can be helpful.