Ablative Laser Treatments
at Woodbury Dental and Laser Clinic in Kent
Improvements in skin concerns are necessary to bring back the youthfulness of one’s appearance, and also to improve the overall look of a person. Improvements in the way one looks like can also have a huge impact on the way one interacts with others – and with the way he or she feels about life in general. Ablative laser treatments can bring about the necessary skin condition improvements that one wishes to have – with results that are dramatic and long lasting.
What is Ablative Laser Surgery?
Ablative Laser treatments or ablative laser resurfacing is considered to be one of the most effective cosmetic procedures in the quest to improve the appearance of ageing skin. This laser treatment works by vaporizing the top layer of the skin to remove wrinkles, blemishes, and scars. There are other laser treatment options (known as non-ablative laser treatments) that work beneath the top layer of the skin but they are less commonly offered as an option for those who want the long-lasting and dramatic results that can be obtained from laser resurfacing treatments.
Ablative Laser Treatment Procedure
All lasers work by emitting a single wavelength of very intense light; this light then produces a controlled injury (controlled wounds or blisters) to the skin that involves just the right amount of damage so that new cells are encouraged to grow and heal the injury. The ablative laser injures the top layers of the skin, allowing for healing of superficial problems due to photo aging (sun damage) or due to natural ageing.
Ablative Laser Treatment Types
The three most common types of lasers used in majority of the cosmetic surgery procedures are also the three types of ablative lasers. The cosmetic or aesthetic practitioner in Kent will recommend the ablative laser treatment type which will work on the specific skin condition of the patient. The three different ablative laser treatment types are:
- Carbon dioxide (CO2) laser – Carbon dioxide (CO2) laser technology allows the physician to focus and adjust a highly intense beam over the areas of the skin that need to be improved. Carbon dioxide (CO2) laser treatment destroys the scars and wrinkles with short pulses of intense laser light. This is a very effective treatment because the laser is extremely hot, but will not be allowed to hover over the skin for long periods of time. The healing period given after the Carbon dioxide (CO2) laser treatments is approximately two months.
- Erbium YAG (ErYAG) laser – The second category of ablative laser skin resurfacing systems is composed of the erbium YAG lasers. The Erbium YAG (ErYAG) laser is a type of laser that emits light which is designed to be absorbed by water as the light comes into contact with the skin. As skin cells are composed mainly of water, the heat produced by the laser light is scattered over the areas of the skin. Erbium lasers are recommended in cases when very precise work is required or when there is a danger of sensitive skin being burned.
- Long pulsed Erbium (YAG) laser – The effects of the long pulsed erbium YAG laser is considered as gentle, but the results are more dramatic and intense. The Long pulsed Erbium (YAG) laser is often used to improve the appearance of scars, deeper facial wrinkles, tattoos, and skin discolourations. The gentleness that is associated with this technologically sophisticated laser makes it ideal to be used most often on very delicate skin, to correct skin conditions such as wrinkles around the outside of the eyes and mouth.
The benefits of using an erbium laser (for acne, scars and wrinkles) over a CO2 laser is that recovery occurs within five to seven days, rather than two months. There is also a decreased chance of unpleasant side effects such as redness, inflammation, and infection if either type of erbium laser is used.
Improvements Made Possible with Ablative Laser Skin Treatments
- Reduction or elimination of the fine lines on the forehead, cheeks, and upper lip areas
- Scar flattening and reduction
- Repair of removal of smoker’s lines
- Softening of frown lines
- Removal of crow’s feet around the eyes
- Tightening and smoothing of the lower and upper eyelid skin
- Removal of age spots, brown spots, liver spots, and freckles
- Overall polishing and smoothing of the complexion to achieve a more youthful appearance
Benefits of Ablative Laser Treatments
Ablative laser treatments involve less time for the entire procedure, so the patient will need to spend a shorter period of time in the doctor’s office (compared to other skin improvement or laser treatments). A shorter healing time is also needed after ablative laser treatments, so that the patient has less down time – and will enjoy a quicker recovery to go back to normal activities. There is also fewer infection risks associated with ablative laser treatments, which are outpatient procedures that can be finished in anywhere from two minutes to two hours – depending on the area that will need to be treated.