Immediately following treatment, clients will notice whitening of the treated area, which usually lasts for less than 30 minutes. Most clients may then begin to feel the treated area become warm or hot, but can easily alleviate any discomfort with ice or a cold compress. Superficial burning may occur and be shown by the formation of blisters or crusting, and can last for about one week. The treated areas may be pink or pale after the scab separates. Scarring, which can be hypertrophic or keloid, can occur but is very rare. Loss of pigment (hypo-pigmentation) in the treated area can occur, and is temporary except in very rare cases. Healing is usually completed within 4 weeks at which time the next treatment can occur.
- Keep the treated area clean while it is healing. Gently clean the area twice a day with antibacterial soap and water and then pat dry. For 3 – 5 days after your treatment, apply polysporin (NOT neosporin) as well as a skin moisturizer such as Aquaphor Healing Ointment. You should also keep the area covered with a sterile dressing throughout this period.
- Blistering is common and is likely to occur the day following your treatment. Blistering is apart of the normal healing process and is not reason for concern. If a blister breaks, it is important to leave the skin in place as it provides an excellent dressing to the affected area. Continue to apply polysporin over the blisters once drainage has occurred as risk of infection is of paramount concern.
- You may apply cool compresses as necessary for 24 hours after the laser treatment to help reduce discomfort and inflammation. You may take Tylenol, but avoid aspirin (it can increase the risk of bruising and/or bleeding).
- Do not pick at the scab or allow the skin to become scraped, as this may result in infection and scarring. Shaving should be avoided in the treated area until it is completely healed.
- You may take a luke warm shower in the same day as your treatment, but take care to avoid high pressure water hitting the treated area. Baths, hot tubs, swimming pools, or any form of soaking are not recommended until all blistering and scabbing are completely healed, as doing so increases the risk of infection.
- Exercise is generally safe after treatment, but be careful not to cause an elevation in heat or the application of sweat to the area(s) treated.
- To help assist in preventing any pigmentation changes to your skin, use of a broadband PA+++ sunscreen should be applied over the area to be treated throughout the course of the removal process.
- Do not wear makeup or any cream or medication on or near the treated area unless recommended by our office for 48 hours following your treatment.
- Itching is very common due to the dehydrating effect of the laser treatment. We recommend the use of hyaluronic acid as it is very effective to help restore moisture to the skin and we make it available at our office.
- If the area looks infected (honey colored crusting, oozing (drainage) or spreading redness), if you experience an unusual discomfort or bleeding, if any other complications develop, or if you have any questions or concerns, contact our office immediately.