At Gold Skin Care Center in Nashville, TN, we recognize that many tattoos are beautiful pieces of art and expressions of ourselves. There are times when we may decide we no longer want to keep a tattoo we got in the past. Tattoo removal is a process that can help get rid of that tattoo.
When tattoo removal is done well by a professional, the client can get their natural skin back without any signs of the original tattoo. With the right equipment and our professionals there to do the job, your tattoo removal can be quick and easy.
What Are My Removal Options?
Many customers wonder about their tattoo removal options. While there are several other options to choose from, laser removal is often considered the best. This is because it is safe and fast. Laser removal also has the highest likelihood of leaving your skin intact after the treatment. This is good news when you want to remove the tattoo but not harm the skin.
If you would still like to learn about other treatment options, there are some choices. Some of these alternative options include surgical excision, traditional dermabrasion, and chemical peel. These can be invasive and they will leave scars. This is why traditional laser removal of tattoos is usually the first choice clients make.
How Many Tattoo Removal Treatments Do I Need?
Another question that many have when they remove a tattoo is how many treatments they need. This depends on the type of tattoo, along with the size, where it is located, the color, the amount of color, and the age of the tattoo. With all these factors, it is hard to come up with how many sessions are necessary without a consultation with one of our specialists.
During the consultation, you can discuss the treatment regimen that is expected to get this done. If you have questions about how many treatments and how long you will need to come for treatments, make sure to bring them up during your consultation.
Number of Sessions
Most tattoos will require between five and ten sessions. Bigger tattoos will take up to the ten sessions, while the smaller ones may be closer to five sessions. It is safe to assume your tattoo will need somewhere in there too.
This is a broad answer because laser removal of tattoos will depend on many factors. The age of the person, the ink they used on the tattoo, and the age of the tattoo all affect how many sessions are necessary.
The Health of the Client
Healthier clients will find they need fewer sessions to remove their tattoos. Since these clients have taken better care of their health, their skin is in better health as well. This makes it easier to put the laser treatment to work and naturally helps the ink come off faster.
For older patients, those who smoke, or those who are not in the best health, the laser treatment may take a little longer. This doesn’t mean laser treatment to remove the tattoos is impossible. The client may simply need a session or two more to get the tattoo removed.
The Ink Used
The type of ink used can affect how many sessions the client needs. How much ink, and how dark the ink is, will factor in as well. Clients need to realize that tattoo ink is not regulated. Some inks are better than others.
Each professional you visit for your tattoo may use a different type of ink. Since there is no standard, there is a lot of variation in ink types. This results in a variance in how long it takes to remove the ink. Your specialist can discuss the type of ink on your skin and figure out how many sessions are necessary.
The Age of the Tattoo
The older the tattoo, the easier it is to remove. Older tattoos have had time to fade as the body naturally rids itself of the ink. This is a slow process that takes many years. It does explain also why a tattoo that is 50 years old looks faded compared to a brand-new tattoo.
How Does This Treatment Work?
Medical lasers used for cosmetic reasons are great for removing tattoos from the skin. There are lasers designed to handle any tattoo, even tattoos with many details and colors. All wavelengths and strengths of these medical lasers can help remove the tattoo while leaving your skin flawless.
The neat thing here is that certain colors of light can be absorbed by specific colors in the ink of your tattoo. The light energy will fragment or vaporize the particles of ink on the skin. The body can then naturally absorb up these fragments, and over a few weeks, the tattoo will start to fade from your skin.
What Types of Lasers are Used?
There are a few different lasers that are used for this treatment. The newest is the Q-switched lasers. They are known to be the most useful for removing these tattoos. Some of the Q-switched lasers that may be used include:
- Alma SINON Q-switched Ruby laser
- Jeisys Tri-Beam
- Cynosure RevLite
- Syneron Candela PicoWay
This option relies on a red 650 nm wavelength to remove the tattoo.
This laser is used to help deliver more than one wavelength of energy in small, nanosecond pulses. This allows the laser to be used to target the unwanted molecules of pigment while helping to minimize the risk to the tissue that is near to it. When used in removing tattoos, it effectively removes the ink without harming the skin.
This laser can be good for removing a tattoo while also lightening and improving other pigmentations on the skin. This can include sun spots, age spots, and melasma. This laser is the preferred type of laser to use for removing tattoos because the laser works on any type of skin and doesn’t require any downtime.
Syneron Candela PicoWay
This is a laser that is designed to treat unwanted tattoos in fewer sessions compared to other laser treatments. This happens because the laser delivers a concentrated amount of energy to the ink you target in faster, shorter bursts that are measured in picoseconds. This is much faster than other laser treatments.
These quick bursts will make sure that the ink in the tattoo is broken into small pieces, allowing the natural processes of the body to clear out the pigment. This laser treatment works with all types of skin and with tattoos that are all black or in many colors. This laser is effective at helping with any tattoo you would like removed.
What Are These Treatments Like?
To start the session, the tattoo is cleaned and a photograph is taken of it. Then there is a laser hand device that glides over the top of the tattoo. This hand device can emit either a pulsed light or a steady light. The color and size of the tattoo will determine how long the treatment will take. The bigger the tattoo, and the more color and detail it has, the longer it takes to complete this treatment.
For example, if the customer has a tattoo that is about the size of a quarter, the treatment can be done between three and five minutes. If the tattoo is bigger, then it will take that much longer. The tattoo removal specialist can discuss the estimated amount of time it will take to remove your tattoo.
Before the Treatment
Ice, lidocaine injections, and BLT cream are often used to help numb up the area around the tattoo before the treatment happens. Laser removal of the tattoo is safe and efficient, but these options help ensure there is no discomfort to the customer during the procedure. Your specialist and you can decide which option is best to numb the area before the treatment starts.
There isn’t much preparation needed before the session. The client needs to pick out the treatment option with their specialist, and they need to choose which numbing cream will help while the laser is being used. Outside of those two factors, the client simply needs to show up at their scheduled time for the treatment to begin.
After the Treatment
When the treatment is done, there is a special type of dressing applied to the area where the laser touched. This dressing will go right over where your tattoo used to be. This helps to keep that area protected and clean while promoting healing. It is recommended that you leave the dressing on for at least two days.
It is natural to want to check on the tattoo and see how the progress is going. After making the decision to remove the tattoo, you want to see whether the laser treatment worked or not. Try to avoid the temptation as much as possible. The more this dressing can stay on, the less likely it will get infected.
What Results Will I Get?
It is important to know what kinds of results you are likely to get from this treatment. The type of tattoo you are removing, and how detailed it was, will determine how quickly you will see results. After each session, you will see a noticeable difference in the tattoo and you should see the fading happen before your eyes. This is true even with detailed and colored tattoos.
The professionalism of the original artist who completed the tattoo and the variety of inks that were used in this process will determine how quickly you will see the results.
How Long Do Treatments Last?
You will need to do several treatments to get rid of a tattoo. Even smaller tattoos take time to removem and you should expect larger ones to not be done overnight. Most treatments are scheduled between six to eight weeks apart so this process can take several months to complete for small and medium tattoos. For really big and elaborate tattoos, prepare to take up to a year to get it completely gone. Even though it may take several months, you should start to notice a reduction in the tattoo after your first session.
You can discuss the treatment options and the length of time between each one with your tattoo removal specialist. They can help you to schedule the treatments to fit your schedule. This will give you a more accurate timeframe for how long your tattoo will take.
How Do I Get Started?
Removing a tattoo is a personal decision that doesn’t come lightly. After spending time and money to get the tattoo in the first place, many people want to work with a professional to get the tattoo removed right. Call Gold Skin Care Center in Nashville, TN to schedule your tattoo removal treatment.