Skin Resurfacing Scottsdale
Has the sun worshiping of your youth finally caught up with you? Have the ravages of acne in your teen years left unsightly scars behind as a constant reminder of the torment you endured? Perhaps time has been a foe instead of a friend. While facial plastic surgery procedures such as face lifts may correct some of the signs of aging, many patients require intense skin care treatments that no surgery or basic facial could deliver. That’s why we offer skin resurfacing treatments here in our Scottsdale facial plastic surgery practice.
Skin resurfacing refers to numerous types of medical-grade skin treatments, including chemical peels, microdermabrasion and laser skin treatments. If you have ever considered the ways in which these treatments could enhance your appearance and self-confidence, then a consultation with our staff may be in order. We can show you all the ways these treatments can help reverse the signs of sun damage, aging and scarring from previous skin conditions.
- Is skin resurfacing for you?
- Deciding on Skin Resurfacing Treatments
- How Skin Resurfacing Works
- After the Skin Resurfacing Procedure
Is skin resurfacing right for you?
Skin resurfacing procedures typically do not give you perfect skin. The goal is simply to improve your skin’s
appearance to the degree that is possible. Depending on your needs, your treatments may require multiple sessions (a series of laser skin treatments, for example), with instructions on a home skin care regimen you should follow in between visits to our practice.
Factors that will determine the type of skin resurfacing treatment we recommend include ethnic background, age, and skin type. If you have dark skin, or issues such as a history of bad scarring, radiation exposure, allergies, a history of blistering or cold sores around the mouth or previous burns, a special evaluation may be necessary to make sure you are a candidate for the procedure you are seeking. Dr. Hecht may recommend a different treatment protocol based on these conditions, or our aesthetician may prescribe a skin care regimen prior to recommending skin resurfacing procedures.
No matter what specific procedure you are seeking, it is important that you choose the correct qualified facility. Our licensed skin care specialists here in Scottsdale are supervised by double board-certified facial plastic surgeon Dr. David A. Hecht, who may perform the treatment himself depending on the procedure required. Our team will assess your skin condition, your desired results, and work with you to determine the best treatment options for your needs, while evaluating potential risks of each treatment recommended. You must provide a thorough medical history to our staff, including any negative reactions you’ve had to skin resurfacing treatments in the past, allergies to intravenous and topical anesthetics or numbing agents, and any other skin conditions you may have that could be aggravated by treatment.
While skin resurfacing can be very anti-aging, it cannot reverse sagging skin. That will require a facelift surgery in most cases, and/or regular dermal filler treatments. While these treatments may erase signs of sun damage, the use of sunscreen is still vitally important, especially immediately after the treatment as your skin is more sensitive.
The skin has two major layers: the epidermis and the dermis. The dermis is comprised of two layers, both comprised of collagen. Collagen is composed of long fibers that stretch and loosen with sun damage and aging. The reticular layer is the deepest layer; when it is damaged, the skin begins to scar. The upper layer of the dermis, the papillary layer, will not scar even with injury. This is the layer of skin that we target during a resurfacing treatment.
During a chemical peel, the practitioner will apply one of many possible chemicals to your skin. Glycolic acid is the mildest option, and trichloroacetic acid, or TCA, can vary in strength. Phenol is the most intense option. Prior to any peel, your face will be cleansed in order to remove any oil and prepare the skin for deep penetration. The epidermis will be removed as the chemical is applied, and it will penetrate into the upper layer of the dermis. Over time, the outer layer will slough off, a new epidermis will emerge and the skin will look smoother and rejuvenated.
Dermabrasion can smooth out some deeper scars. Treatment is done either with a freezing agent, local anesthetic, or both to numb the skin. Then, a high-speed rotating brush will be used to remove the top layer of skin to the correct level for optimal results. The length of the treatment will depend on the size/depth of scars.
Laser skin resurfacing resurfaces wrinkled facial skin that has been exposed to too much sun, is scarred from acne, or has crow’s feet. The light waves of a carbon dioxide laser will vaporize the upper layer of skin.
Right after a procedure, the practitioner may apply a dressing on your skin. It is normal to have some swelling or even a little bit of a crust on your skin. Typically, ointments will be applied for 7 to 10 days after treatment to keep the skin supple. Skin redness typically goes away within four weeks. Your surgeon will probably tell you to avoid extremes in temperature, to maintain a soft diet, and to avoid any activity that would stress your skin. You need to follow postoperative instructions completely. Tell your surgeon right away if you experience any itching or increasing redness or pain after surgery.
About a week or two after the procedure, you will see new skin that is finer, pinkish, and free of a lot of the wrinkles and skin damage that were there before. However, be prepared for it to take several weeks for the redness to go away completely. To follow up with your care, use sunblock to protect your skin while it creates new pigment. Many patients observe that their skin is lighter for a long time after the surgery, but this usually goes away once the skin naturally restores its own pigment.
Skin resurfacing treatments can correct many issues that make people self conscious, and it can truly help you feel better about yourself. If the treatment is done purely for cosmetic reasons, it will generally not be covered by insurance. However, if you’re looking to correct an accidental skin injury or major deformity, it may be at least partially reimbursable. It is your responsibility as a patient to check with your insurance carrier about what insurance will do for you.