Resurfacing your skin is one of the most effective ways to minimize signs of aging, correct dark spots, fade scarring, and more. However, there are dozens of treatment options available. How can you be sure that you’ll choose the best treatment for you? At Gold Skin Care Center in Nashville, TN, we’re proud to offer fractional laser resurfacing: a cutting-edge treatment and the best option available for quick, effective, long-lasting skin resurfacing and rejuvenation.
Why Is Fractional Laser Treatment the Best Skin Resurfacing Option?
Known in the medical world as fractional photothermolysis, fractional laser skin resurfacing combines the best modern laser technology and incredible accuracy to offer targeted treatment for multiple skin concerns. This treatment creates a grid-like pattern in the skin, treating only about half of the target area with the laser.
The small sections of skin treated by the laser begin the process of cell rejuvenation and collagen production, while the untreated areas create a stable framework to keep your skin healthy as it heals. Laser resurfacing has several advantages over other treatment options.
Topical treatments like microdermabrasion can be effective in resurfacing the outer layer of the skin, but they cannot promote healing and new cell growth beneath the skin like laser treatment. At the same time, results from laser treatment last longer than those of chemical peel or microneedling treatments, which can stimulate collagen production and fresh cell growth, but only for a short period of time. Finally, our laser treatments can address almost every common skin concern and can be customized to meet each patient’s needs.
Which Types of Treatment Are Available?
We offer two distinct types of laser resurfacing in our office. Both types are considered highly effective, but our experienced doctors will recommend the best option to address your specific concerns.
Considered the more intensive treatment option, an ablative laser affects both the upper and lower layers of the skin. The epidermis, which is most directly affected during treatment, is safely removed, revealing fresh new skin underneath. While the recovery process is longer for an ablative resurfacing treatment, it is able to greatly improve or completely erase acne scars, significant sun damage, and even deep lines and wrinkles.
Treatment with an ablative laser includes a topical anesthetic cream along with a build-in cooling function in the handheld laser to ensure your comfort. In just one to two treatments, most of our patients see their skin concerns fade and their desired results appear.
A non-ablative laser is often used to treat mild to moderate lines and wrinkles, scars, and pigment abnormalities over a longer period of time. Unlike the ablative laser, this option passes through the top layer of your skin to heat the lower layers and stimulate new collagen production.
The average patient has four to six treatments separated by one-month intervals to allow the skin to heal, before seeing their ideal results. While this treatment requires more time, it is perfect for patients who want little to no downtime in order to maintain a full schedule. You’ll be able to watch your skin transform over the course of your treatment as new collagen improves the structure of your skin and gives you a brand-new glow.
Which Skin Concerns Can Be Treated?
One of the things that makes this option the best skin resurfacing treatment is that it can partially or completely improve almost every skin-related concern our patients experience. Depending on your specific concerns, we can combine laser treatments with other skin rejuvenating options to achieve your ideal results.
This common skin condition can affect everyone, from teenagers to adults in their 30s and 40s. Living with acne can affect your self-esteem, and treating it at home can be frustrating and ineffective. Laser resurfacing can help some types of acne by heating the lower layers of the skin and stimulating new collagen growth to help promote overall skin health.
The development of darker, more pigmented areas of skin can be a result of aging or sun damage. These spots create an uneven skin tone and can grow darker with time. Laser resurfacing is able to fade hyperpigmentation and restore a natural, even skin tone in just a few treatments.
Skin texture can be affected by current or past acne breakouts, dry skin, or dead skin cells which cause tiny bumps under the surface of your skin. Uneven texture can make it difficult to apply makeup products evenly and is often a source of low self-esteem for many of our patients. Resurfacing your skin with laser treatments can reveal smoother, healthier skin with an even texture.
Sun damage is estimated to cause over 90% of all common skin concerns. It’s important to always wear sun protection outside, but what should you do if your skin already shows signs of sun damage? The right laser treatment can help fade sun spots, smooth away fine lines, and restore an even tone to skin damaged by the sun. Best of all, patients of any age can see improvement in sun damage thanks to this treatment.
Our pores can become blocked by skin cells, oil, and skincare products or stretch out as we age and our skin loses its elasticity. Laser resurfacing can boost collagen production, which tightens skin and reinforces large pores to make them less noticeable.
Skin dullness can be greatly improved by laser resurfacing. As the laser heats the skin, it stimulates collagen production. This essential protein not only provides structure to your skin but also contributes to your skin’s overall health and attractive appearance. Most of our patients report that they notice a new glow in their skin after just one to three laser treatments.
Scars are notoriously difficult to treat, but this revolutionary laser resurfacing option offers our patients the chance to say goodbye to their scars. Laser treatment is especially effective for deep acne scars and pockmarks. Collagen production helps lift these scars to the level of the rest of your skin over time.
Fine Lines and Wrinkles
Fine lines and wrinkles can begin developing as early as the mid-20s, making you look older and more tired than you really are. Over time, they become deeper and more noticeable. Laser resurfacing can improve the appearance of these common signs of aging and steadily fade them away over the course of a personalized treatment plan.
Loose and sagging skin can affect the areas around your eyes, mouth, jawline, and décolletage. Over time, your body naturally decreases its collagen and elastin production. The existing framework in the skin begins to break down, and your skin can start to sag and fold. Laser resurfacing helps refresh your skin’s structure with new collagen, which tightens the skin and minimizes folds.
While most patients address skin concerns on their faces, laser resurfacing is an excellent treatment for stretch marks on the abdomen, hips, thighs, and other areas of the body. By removing the top layer of skin, laser treatment helps erase stretch marks and create a smooth finish.
How Long Do Results Last?
Whether you have ablative or non-ablative laser treatment, you can expect long-lasting results. Due to its less intensive nature, non-ablative laser resurfacing produces results more slowly. However, once your final results are visible, you can expect to see them last for one to four years.
Ablative laser treatments involve more downtime but deliver faster results which typically last two to five years. Final results depend on the patient, skin type, age, and lifestyle, and our practice has seen both treatment options produce longer-lasting results with intentional skincare and maintenance.
While results can be long-lasting, there is no truly permanent solution to the natural aging process. Over time, you will see some concerns begin to emerge again as you grow older. Most of our patients choose to pursue follow-up treatment to maintain their ideal results. One of our doctors can recommend a personalized treatment plan for you once your final results are visible.
What Are the Benefits of Treatment?
Laser skin resurfacing is the best option for most patients thanks to the relatively short treatment time, proven rejuvenating effects, and long-lasting results. Treatment is quick and involves little to no discomfort. Depending on the type of laser treatment recommended for your concerns, there is minimal to no downtime after your appointment, which allows you to return to your normal activities almost immediately.
Even advanced skin conditions and concerns can be improved with a laser session, and this treatment continues to improve as the technology evolves. Best of all, you’ll experience a significant confidence boost as you watch your skin transform.
Who Is an Ideal Candidate?
This treatment is considered safe and effective for almost every patient when performed by a trained and experienced doctor. If you are a man or woman of any age with concerns about the appearance of your skin, laser skin resurfacing could be the treatment you’ve been waiting for.
You may not be an ideal candidate if you have some types of active acne breakouts. In addition, this treatment may not be ideal for patients with very dark skin tones as they are more at risk for hyperpigmentation due to laser exposure.
Those with deep wrinkles and excessive loose skin may not be ideal candidates, as these conditions cannot be significantly altered by laser resurfacing. If you are unsure about your candidacy for treatment, one of our doctors would be happy to evaluate your skin type, tone, and concerns as well as answer any questions you have.
What Should I Expect?
When you choose to pursue laser skin resurfacing treatment at our professional practice, you can rest assured that our dedicated staff will be ready to answer your questions along the way. Every patient’s experience is unique, but here is a brief idea of what you can expect from this treatment:
Before you begin your journey to fresh new skin, you’ll sit down with one of our doctors for an initial consultation. This appointment allows us to examine your areas of concern, review your medical history, and determine your candidacy for treatment. In addition, you’ll be able to ask any questions you may have about what to expect during treatment and recovery.
Once you are approved for treatment, your doctor will give you instructions on how to prepare for your first appointment. You should follow these instructions carefully to ensure ideal results.
Your doctor may give you specific instructions, but in general, we recommend that patients avoid sun exposure, including tanning, for one to two weeks before treatment. You should also avoid any new skincare products or treatments which could irritate your skin before your laser skin resurfacing appointment.
On the day of your appointment, we recommend that you avoid wearing any products on your skin in the target area. Your doctor will cleanse your skin before applying a topical anesthetic. They will then use a handheld laser device to treat small areas of your skin at a time. You may feel some heat and slight pressure, but you should feel no discomfort.
Depending on the areas treated, your appointment could take 15-60 minutes. Once treatment is complete, your doctor may apply a healing cream or a dressing to protect the treated areas. If your treatment was less intensive, you should be able to return to your normal activities immediately with zero downtime.
For patients who had non-ablative treatment, some redness may occur for 12-24 hours. This is normal and should fade within the first day. You should avoid spending time in the sun for at least 1 week to allow your skin to heal and to avoid irritation. To promote healing, keep your skin moisturized and drink plenty of water.
Patients who had ablative treatment may experience mild tenderness and redness in the treated areas for the first one to three days. You should keep your skin clean and moisturized. Your doctor may also recommend an additional healing cream to apply regularly.
Typically, the top layer of skin begins to peel after your first treatment. You should avoid picking or rubbing the skin. After about two weeks, the top layer of skin should be gone, revealing fresh, smooth skin.
Final results typically appear one to two months after four to six non-ablative laser treatments. You should notice that your skin is smoother, brighter, and tighter thanks to the new collagen. In addition, your skin concerns should be noticeably improved. Final results after one to two ablative treatments can take up to three months to fully appear as the skin heals, but most patients report seeing a significant improvement in their skin concerns thanks to the deeper skin resurfacing process.
In general, your results should last at least one year, although most patients find that their final results last two to five years with proper skincare and sun protection. Once your final results are visible, our doctors can help you determine the best time to perform follow-up treatments based on the ideal image you wish to maintain.
Contact Us to Learn More!
While there are many effective options available, not all skin resurfacing treatments were created equal. If you’re ready to see your skin renewed from the inside-out and enjoy natural, long-lasting results with laser resurfacing, contact our team of experts at Gold Skin Care Center in Nashville, TN to schedule an initial consultation today! We look forward to serving you and helping you achieve your skincare goals!