Laser for pigmentation and rejuvenation
Our skin is the largest organ of our body, and it is constantly exposed to the one thing that ages it, the sun. Overexposure to the sun can cause a plethora of skin issues such as wrinkles, skin cancer, and pigmentation problems. These issues result in premature ageing, making you appear older than you actually are. At Zest, we can help you fix your pigmentation problems and reverse ageing, thus making you appear youthful and vibrant.
What is pigmentation?
Pigmentation is the colour of our skin and we get our pigmentation from melanin which is produced by our skin cells. The amount of melanin correlates to our pigmentation—more melanin=darker pigmentation, less melanin=lighter pigmentation.
There are two types of pigmentation problems that can occur, these are:
- Hyperpigmentation: excess pigmentation that occurs in certain areas of the skin but particularly on the face. Examples include freckles, melasma, age spots, solar lentigines (sunspots), etc.
- Hypopigmentation: reduced pigmentation that occurs in certain areas of the skin. Examples include, albinism, vitiligo.
What causes pigmentation problems?
Causes of hyperpigmentation
- Sun exposure
Causes of hypopigmentation
How does laser for pigmentation removal work?
Pigmentation removal works by safely and effectively reducing the appearance of hyperpigmentation issues such as freckles, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (e.g. acne scars), solar lentigines, and age spots. The laser targets the area of hyperpigmentation in the skin without damaging the surrounding skin. During the procedure, the targeted area absorbs the light which heats up and shatters the excess pigment. This is then drawn to the surface, causing it to fade, dry, or flake off, leaving an even tone and complexion to your skin.
At Zest, our treatment for hyperpigmentation involves the following:
- LTRA Miin Laser
- Sciton BBL Hero
- FOTONA Dynamis Pro
- Chemical Peels including ENERPEEL
Benefits of lasers for hyperpigmentation removal
- Safe and effective
- Results in smooth and even skin tone
- Tightens and rejuvenates skin
- Reduces pore size
Suitable candidates for lasers to remove hyperpigmentation
Individuals with the following hyperpigmentation issues are suitable for this procedure:
- Age spots
- Hori’s Naevus
- Nevus of Ota
- Solar lentigines (sunspots)
It is important to note that while melasma is a type of hyperpigmentation, it cannot be treated with lasers alone. Certain laser treatments for melasma will cause the pigmentation to darken. Hence it is important to consult an experienced doctor to treat melasma effectively.
Women who are pregnant and breastfeeding are not suitable candidates.
To get the best results of your procedure you must:
- Stop smoking: smoking has been known to reduce blood flow to the skin, increasing your chances of tissue damage, and hindering healing and recovery.
- Stop some medications: certain medications such as aspirins and anti-inflammatory drugs thin your blood making you more susceptible to bleeding during and after the procedure.
What results can I expect?
The results of laser treatment on pigmentation are not immediate. After treatment, the treated area will darken and slowly start to dry and flake off. This can take between one to three weeks, depending on how your body heals and recovers.
For the best results, you must observe the following:
Two weeks prior to treatment
- Avoid direct sun exposure
- Avoid laser, IPL (intense pulsed light therapy), skin needling, cosmetic grade chemical peels
- Avoid electrolysis, facial waxing, and depilatory use
One week prior to treatment
- Avoid prescription topical vitamin A
Our doctors at Zest will advise you on the steps you must follow post-treatment to ensure the best results and to prevent a relapse of your pigmentation problem.
How many treatment sessions are required?
The amount of sessions required depends on the severity of your pigmentation problem and how your skin responds to each laser treatment session. However, usually more than one treatment session will be required for the best results.
Frequently asked questions
New areas of pigmentation may occur if proper care is not practised. Remember to use good quality sunscreen everyday to prevent new pigmentation problems from occurring.
As previously mentioned, Melasma treatment requires a combination approach. Treatment for melasma include, different types of Lasers, topical ointments, sunscreen, oral therapies, injectables, microneedling, and chemical peels. Despite satisfactory lightening post treatment, Melasma pigments tend to be recurrent if the risk factors like skin irritants, hormonal changes, temperature, humidity fluctuations, etc are not addressed effectively. Melasma treatment often requires long term maintenance treatments.