The basics of laser hair removal
Your hair goes through a number of stages. However, your hair doesn’t go through these stages at the same time. When it comes to laser hair removal, it can only treat hair in the growth stage.
So, because not all of the hairs in a treatment area will be at the same stage at the same time, the area will likely need to be treated more than once to make sure all of the hairs are caught in their growth stage. In general, most people need 2-6 sessions spaced several weeks apart.
When it comes to the treatment itself, the system emits laser energy into the treatment area, and the hairs absorb this energy. The energy then travels down the hairs to the follicles, heating them up and making them unable to function. Then, the hairs in the treatment area fall out on their own over the following days.
Caring for your skin
After your treatment session, you may experience side effects, such as redness, tenderness, and mild swelling. Side effects typically last 1-3 days. Here are some strategies you can use to help minimize side effects:
Soothe your skin
To soothe any irritation, try applying a cool compress, such as a clean washcloth soaked in cool water. Or try using an ice pack wrapped in a towel to reduce pain and swelling.
Take approved medications
To treat pain and irritation, try taking over-the-counter painkillers, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol®). Or, if directed, apply prescription steroid creams to reduce pain.
Don’t shave too soon
Wait to shave treated areas until they’re no longer discolored, red, swollen, or painful.
Avoid sun exposure
Keep the treated areas out of the sun for as long as directed by your provider. And especially avoid tanning, as doing so could increase your risk of getting sunburned and developing pigment issues.
Avoid certain skin care products
Pay attention to the products you use on the skin in the treated areas for a few days after each session. Soaps, scrubs, lotions, and deodorants that contain perfumes and fragrances could irritate the sensitive skin.
Monitor your skin
Get in touch with a medical professional if you have pain that doesn’t respond to medication or if you see increased swelling, burns, blisters, or symptoms of pigmentation changes, scarring, or infection.
To learn more about laser hair removal and to see if it can help you, call 205-494-7677 or book an appointment online with Ross Bridge Medical Center today.