Laser hair removal is one of the most commonly performed and safest cosmetic procedures in the United States. The process stands as a highly efficient method for quickly removing unwanted hair from the bikini line, legs, arms, face and other areas of the body, but there are a few minor side effects of Laser Hair Removal that you should know about as you prepare for your appointment.
What to Expect Before and During the Procedure?
Plan to stay out of the sun for up to six weeks before your appointment for laser hair removal. Having a tan increases the chances of side effects, including lightening of your skin.
If you already have a tan, either from being in the sun or from a sunless tanner, you should wait for the tan to fade before you have a laser hair removal treatment. In addition, dont pluck hairs or get waxing, electrolysis or threading beforehand.
Removing hair with these methods can disturb the underlying hair follicles and can cause complications during your procedure.
Shaving is fine, since it leaves the hair shaft and follicle intact. To minimize any risk of side effects, be sure a licensed professional will perform your laser hair removal.
Having the procedure administered by someone who is not properly licensed can result in burns, scarring and permanent changes to skin color.
Before your laser hair removal, your skin will be cleaned, and youll wear protective eye gear during the procedure. After the procedure is complete, a cooling gel is applied to minimize any discomfort.
Laser Hair Removal — Possible Side Effects
Laser hair removal is a highly safe, commonly used procedure that typically does not require downtime afterward. Although you may experience slight redness and swelling for a few hours, you should be able to return immediately to normal activities.
Along with slight skin irritation redness, swelling and other temporary discomfort . The most common side effect of laser hair removal is temporary lightening or darkening of treated areas.
Lightening primarily occurs in individuals with darker skin. During the month following your laser hair removal, treated hair will fall out. You should wear sunscreen during this time to impede temporary color changes to treated skin. Rare side effects of laser hair removal include:
- Crusting or scarring.
- Other changes in skin texture.
- Cold sore outbreaks.
- Permanent changes in skin color.
- Graying of treated hair.
- Excessive hair growth in or around treated areas.
Limiting Side Effects of Laser Hair Removal After Treatment
To minimize any side effects you experience after your treatment, you should take the following steps:
- Avoid spending time in direct sunlight that reaches the treated skin.
- Do not use indoor tanning equipment, including a tanning bed or sun lamp.
- Apply cool compresses as needed to ease any residual redness and discomfort.
- Once your skin heals, use sunscreen whenever youll be exposed to direct sunlight.
- Follow your doctors instructions for additional steps to take.
When Should You Have Another Treatment?
Fully removing unwanted hair usually requires a series of treatments that can take place about every four to six weeks. To schedule a consultation with our Med-spa staff at NOVA Plastic Surgery, patients from VA, MD and D.C., may call (703) 574-2588.