You know that injectables, such as Juvederm or Botox, can help fill in or reduce the look of wrinkles and lines. But, what if it’s not so much wrinkles that are getting you down, but the overall texture and tone of your skin? A number of skin rejuvenation treatments look beyond wrinkles and help improve the overall look and feel of your skin. Whether you’re concerned about spots or freckles, acne scars, or a rough skin surface, rejuvenation treatments, which range from superficial to deep, can help take care of your issues.
A chemical peel might be one of the first skin rejuvenation options a person considers. A peel helps exfoliate the skin, removing the top layer of dead cells, so that skin looks refreshed and improved.
Chemical peels are fairly common, and you’ve probably seen over-the-counter options on sale at a makeup or drugstore. You might have also seen chemical peels on the menu of services at a local salon or spa. While an at-home or in-spa peel can provide some benefit, the type of peel you’ll get a medical practice, performed under the supervision of a facial plastic surgeon will be much more in-depth.
There are a variety of options when it comes to the strength and intensity of a chemical peel performed at a medical practice. Lighter peels usually contain an ingredient such as alpha hydroxy acid and are generally used on people who have just a few signs of aging, such as some fine lines or some areas of uneven skin tone. Deeper peels might contain trichloroacetic acid or phenol acid and are generally used when a person has more signs of aging, such as deeper wrinkles, rougher texture and darker age spots.
The results from a deeper peel are usually more dramatic and longer lasting. The trade off is that the recovery time is considerably longer. While you’ll most likely be ready to go back to work the day after a mild peel, you might need to take as much as two weeks off after a deeper peel. During your consultation, you can discuss what you want to get from the peel and how much time you can afford to take off from work so that the surgeon can help you determine which peel is best for you.
While a chemical peel uses a chemical solution to exfoliate the face, dermabrasion uses a wire tool to manually exfoliate the skin. The treatment is usually much deeper than a chemical peel. The goal of dermabrasion is to remove dead or damaged skin cells, so that new, better looking skin cells are produced.
Dermabrasion is often performed to help reduce deeply etched lines and wrinkles, to remove areas of scar tissue, or to smooth rough areas of skin. The treatment does remove pigment, so it will erase freckles or dark spots. It might not be a good option for people with darker complexions, as it can cause an overall lightening of skin.
It’s important to understand that dermabrasion is a more intense treatment than a chemical peel. During treatment, your surgeon will most likely use at least a local anesthetic and will most likely give you a sedative, so that you’ll be awake but not really aware of what is going on. Recovery can take a few weeks, during which time you’ll want to avoid going to work. Redness is common and can take a few months to fully fade, too.
Laser Skin Resurfacing
If you are looking for a treatment that’s more in-depth than a chemical peel but that doesn’t have as long of a recovery period as dermabrasion, fractional CO2 laser skin resurfacing might be an option. A fractional laser treatment only affects certain areas of the skin, but provides all-over facial rejuvenation. It can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, fade dark spots, and reduce areas of scarring.
There is some recovery time time needed after a laser treatment. You might need to take about a week off from work. Depending on your skin, you might want to schedule a series of laser treatments, spaced a few weeks apart, to get the best results.
Dr. Stephen Smith is a fourth-generation facial plastic surgeon in Ohio. Along with a number of facial plastic surgery procedures, he offers non-surgical skin rejuvenating treatments. Dr. Smith can examine your skin and help you determine which treatment is best for you at the moment. He practices at two locations in Ohio. Call (614) 702-7342 to schedule a consultation with him at either location.