Dark spots on the skin, also called hyperpigmentation, are one of the main cosmetic issues that are subjected to therapy.
The solution to this problem should always include both sun protection and lightening products, as well as specialized procedures - laser therapy, chemical peels, mesotherapy, etc.
Over the past decade, laser systems have been the focus of therapy for these benign skin changes.
What is laser therapy?
In recent years, the laser systems used in the treatment of unwanted hyperpigmentation have become more and more. Initially, the primary technology used for this purpose was IPL (intense pulsed light). Due to the fact that it has its limitations and spectrum of possibilities, different lasers became more popular - Alexandrite, PDL, Q-switched lasers, etc.
In the laser therapy, a beam of light of one wavelength is directed to the surface of the skin, which is selectively absorbed by the targeted structures, in the case of the pigment of the skin and hairs. The absorbed light is transformed into heat and selective destruction of target structures occurs in the case of skin and hair pigments.
What are the main hyperpigments that are subjected to laser therapy?
- Melasma, also known as the "pregnancy mask"
- Freckles, lentigo and other hyperpigmentaty forms caused by the action of the sun's rays.
- Diffused hyperpigmentation of the skin or other pigmentation caused by different substances on the skin.
How many procedures are recommended to achieve an effect?
Each laser procedure results in a visible result, but to achieve maximum visible and long-lasting results, it is advisable to do at least 2-3 consecutive procedures in the span of 30-45 days.
Advantages and disadvantages of laser therapy for hyperpigmented spots?
Laser therapy is a non-invasive and relatively mild procedure that allows a person to return to their usual chores after the end of the procedure, practically without a recovery period. The procedure is fast, painless, accompanied only by slight discomfort. After the procedure, the skin remains slightly red; it is possible to see a slight increase in pigmentation a few hours after the treatment.
Limitations on laser treatment are mostly related to the season and the need to avoid exposure to sunlight after it. Summer is the only season in which it is desirable to avoid this therapy.
It is not desirable for IPL therapy to be subjected to moles, as this may lead to cellular changes in them, which will become the basis for activating the process of carcinogenesis.
Are there any contraindications for laser and IPL therapy?
Laser and phototherapy are procedures with relatively few contraindications. It is desirable that it does not take place during the summer months of the year.
The procedure is not recommended during pregnancy and breastfeeding as well as hormonal problems that increase the sensitivity of the skin to ultraviolet rays.
Laser treatments are not performed in the presence of infectious skin problems that can be treated. Most often this can be herpes or bacterial contamination of the skin. It is necessary to wait until the inflammation passes in order to carry out the procedure.
Relative contraindication to this therapy may be epilepsy and other illnesses leading to seizures. They can be activated by bright light during the procedure. If there is such a disease, you should discuss with the patient the risk of activating a new attack and consult with the treating neurologist.