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CO2 Laser resurfacing is a procedure that uses a laser to improve the appearance of skin or treat minor facial flaws like a scar by removing layers of skin. CO2 Laser resurfacing eliminates warts and wrinkles, improves skin laxity, decreases sun damage and age spots.
What CO2 laser resurfacing does is cut away skin to a point that is safe and deep enough to allow the skin cells located in the skin appendages to "resurface" your skin. CO2 laser resurfacing removes the top layers of your skin to reduce pigmentation issues, sun spots, fine wrinkles and superficial lesions. The texture of your skin will be lighter. You can also reduce the lines around your mouth.
The papillae is a layer of the skin where the skin cells go along a wavy structure. Deep laser resurfacing goes into the dermis, deeper than the papillae. The cells that are deeper than your hair follicles and other skin organs can “resurface” your skin. The new skin covers your flatter skin surface and develops a layer of collagen to make your skin uniform and smoother.
The common type of resurfacing lasers is the Carbon Dioxide (CO2), an ablative laser that treats scars, warts, wrinkles and other skin conditions. CO2 lasers can perform a deeper peel. The CO2 contributes a more thorough treatment for moderate to deep facial lines and wrinkles. It uses short pulsed light energy or continuous light beams in a scanning pattern, which extracts thin layers of skin with minimal heat damage. Recovery can take up to two weeks.
CO2 Laser resurfacing decimates the wrinkles around your eyes where extra skin and droopy skin can be pulled up and reduced. One of the big benefits of laser resurfacing is increasing the collagen layer within the skin to camouflage lower eyelid dark circles, which are created from tissue loss within the lower eyelid. This results in the thinning of the skin and lets the orbicularis eye muscle and its dark hue to show through the skin. When you lose tissue along the inferior orbital rim, there is a shadowing effect under the lower eyelid fat pads that give that dark circle look.
An Erbium laser can be ablative or non-ablative. It removes superficial and moderately deep lines and wrinkles on the face, chest, hands and neck. The Erbium laser promotes collagen remodeling, a great choice for treating fine lines, age spots, skin laxity and wrinkles. It has minimal burning of surrounding tissue. The recovery is usually a week shorter than CO2 laser resurfacing Philadelphia patients also experience fewer side effects with Erbium than with the carbon laser. However, Erbium does not resurface as deep.
A Pulsed-Dye laser, usually non-ablative, heats the skin and absorbs pigments to help decrease broken capillaries, hyperpigmentation and redness.
A Fractional laser breaks up the energy into thousands of small beams to handle only a portion of the skin. These lasers can be ablative or non-ablative and can also aid in dealing with age-related blemishes.
An Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) is not a laser but treats similar conditions like acne, hyperpigmentation and rosacea.Learn more here
Autumn is considered laser season? Laser-treated skin is very sensitive to sun exposure for up to a year after a procedure which is why the recommendation is to have a laser resurfacing treatment in the fall or winter months. But no matter when you get a laser procedure, always make sure to wear a sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher to help prevent skin cancer.
Darker skin can benefit from laser resurfacing? It is a misconception that this type of treatment is only safe for light skin types. Erbium lasers are considered safe and effective for lighter-toned African American, Hispanic or Asian skin tones. Patients with darker skin tones may opt for microneedling or other skin resurfacing treatments.
Laser Resurfacing Can Treat:
“I did a lot of research before choosing a surgeon. I like and trust Dr. Morgenstern as he is artistic, he aims for a natural look and gives attention to detail. Dr. Morgenstern is a perfectionist.”
Anyone with active acne or very dark skin are not good candidates for a CO2 laser resurfacing treatment. However, anyone with fine lines or wrinkles around the eyes, mouth or forehead can definitely benefit from CO2 laser resurfacing Philadelphia based Center for Orbital & Facial Plastic Surgery is a great place to receive treatment.
Like any surgery, there are some risks involved with laser resurfacing but most are usually minor, including burns, infection, itchiness, pigmentation issues, scarring and swelling.
The average time for healing is between three to seven days depending on what exactly you are having done. You may feel some itchiness for up to three days after your procedure. It is normal to see your skin become dry and peel a few days after surgery.
There can be some significant amount of skin care for Philadelphia CO2 laser resurfacing patients. You will receive comprehensive post-care instructions during your consultation and on the day of your surgery. It is important that you follow these instructions to maximize healing and prevent infections. You might receive a bandage for the treated area. You will need to clean it a few times a day. You’ll also need to apply an ointment to prevent scabs from forming.
It’s a good idea to elevate your head when you go to sleep to help ease swelling. You can also use an ice pack on the treated area to decrease swelling in the first couple of days after your surgery. Oil-free makeup can be utilized once the skin has healed. It will help reduce redness for the two or three months it will take to fade away (but it can be as much as six months for the redness to completely disappear). And of course, always wear sunscreen with a sun protection factor of 30 or higher when outside and wear a hat to protect your skin.
Here are some of the great benefits of getting a CO2 laser resurfacing in Philadelphia and the Main Line area:
At The Morgenstern Center for Orbital and Facial Plastic Surgery, you will find innovative treatment options and a commitment to excellence. Let Dr. Kenneth Morgenstern guide you on your path to wellness by creating a personalized treatment plan to optimize your results.
Wayne, PA Office:
123 Bloomingdale Ave Suite 102
Wayne, PA 19087
Lancaster, PA Office:
606 Community Way
Lancaster, PA 17603
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