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IPL Photorejuvenation FAQs:

What is Photodamage or Photoaging?

Accumulated sun exposure has a negative effect on our skin over time. The visible signs of aging are reflected in irregular pigmented or brown spots, red facial veins, wrinkled or loose skin, textural changes and enlarged pores.

What is Rosacea?

Rosacea is a chronic skin condition characterized by redness on the cheeks, nose, chin and forehead. The symptoms usually begin after 30 years of age and flare ups become more frequent with time. Rosacea is more common in fair skinned individuals who have a tendency to flush or blush easily.

Signs and symptoms:

Flushing – many individuals with rosacea have a history of frequent flushing or blushing. This facial redness may come and go, and is often the earliest sign of the condition.

Persistent Redness – Persistent facial redness is the most common individual sign of rosacea and may resemble a blush or sunburn that does not go away.

Bumps and Pimples – Small red solid bumps or pimples often develop. While these may resemble acne, blackheads are absent and burning or stinging may occur.

Visible Blood Vessels – In many individuals with rosacea, small blood vessels become visible on the skin.

What is IPL?

Intensed Pulsed Light (IPL) technology is a treatment breakthrough that can correct a variety of benign skin conditions, such as face and body skin imperfections, the signs of photoaging, birthmarks, unwanted hair, unsightly small veins and other blemishes. It offers a safe and non-invasive solution that can be customized to your individual condition and skin type, providing superior cosmetic results and satisfaction. The Lumenis One Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) is the gold standard for skin rejuvenation. The focus of IPL treatments improve texture, tone, color and offer some tightening of the skin with improvement of fine wrinkles. Photorejuvenation treatments will not improve significant wrinkling of the skin. IPL skin treatments have great appeal to individuals with active lifestyles who cannot take time off for healing which would be required with surgery or other invasive treatments. The procedure requires no “downtime” and clients can resume most activities immediately after treatment except for sun exposure.

Who can have it?

Males or females with broken capillaries, a flushed appearance, brown spots, enlarged pores, mild wrinkling, rosacea, port wine stain birthmarks, freckles and hyperpigmentation are the most common indications for IPL treatment.

What is expected before the treatment?

A facial skin care program will be designed for you at the time of your consultation with the dermatologist. The program should be started before you commence your treatment sessions and will continue following the procedure for ongoing prevention and long term maintenance. Your face should be clean and free of all make up prior to each session. Avoid tanning 1 month before and 1 month after your treatment as this will enhance blotchiness and alter your response to treatment. Apply a sunscreen moisturizer with an SPF of 20 or greater each day and avoid direct sun exposure.

How is Photorejuvenation performed?

The Lumenis One Intense Pulse Light Technology provides a spectrum of different light wavelengths. The colours in the IPL light are attracted to the browns, reds and deeper collagen tissue in the skin. The heat generated from the light targets and vaporizes the browns, coagulates the reds and heats the collagen. The body’s healing mechanisms take over and slough the browns, decrease the reds and thicken the collagen leaving you with a refreshed appearance. A cold gel is applied to the area to be treated, and you will be given dark glasses to protect your eyes from the bright light. The smooth cool surface of the IPL hand piece is gently applied to the skin. The sensation felt during the treatment will be similar to the light snap of an elastic band against the skin. Using highly controlled flashes of IPL light, the high-tech procedure acts on both the superficial and deeper skin layers while at the same time delivering beneficial thermal energy to deep tissue. Healthy surrounding tissue is not affected by the IPL light. Treatment is generally administered in a series of 3-5 sessions, at 3 week intervals, providing excellent long-term results, minimal adverse effects and high client satisfaction. Each treatment takes about 20-30 minutes with more time allotted for multiple body areas. Tylenol may be taken to improve any discomfort though ASA (Aspirin) containing medication should be avoided if possible as it may increase the risk of bruising in the post treatment phase.

What is expected after treatment?

Treated areas generally appear flushed and fading typically occurs within a few hours. In most cases you can resume regular activities immediately after the treatment. Facial areas will look and feel like you have been in the sun or wind for 24-48 hours after a session. Sometimes a client may develop minor bruising lasting approximately 5-10 days; blisters can occur though are uncommon. In those that have sun induced pigmentation changes – the brown pigmented areas (i.e.freckles) darken and may become slightly elevated and scaly. This darkness takes on a “dirty look” until it flakes off in 7-10 days. Makeup may be applied immediately after the procedure though must be discontinued if irritating. In those rare circumstances where scabs develop clients may use an antibiotic ointment like polysporin 2 – 3 times a day sparingly as a thin layer. Your skin care regime that has been designed for you may be resumed as discussed 3 days after the procedure. It is especially important to protect the treated areas from sun by applying your sunscreen every day and to avoid direct sun exposure. As most signs of photoaging are related to sun exposure, long term sun protection is advised to prevent the development of new photodamaged areas. As our skin naturally matures with time clients require maintenance treatments to eliminate any newly developed pigmented spots that develop.

Who cannot have these sessions?

Some medications and medical conditions can interfere with treatments; your physician will review your history to assess your suitability. It is not recommended during pregnancy/breastfeeding or if you have unrealistic expectations. These sessions cannot be done on anyone with a tan (natural or applied tanning products). IPL photorejuvenation is not recommended for those individuals with black skin.