With today’s innovating anti-aging techniques, it’s now possible to easily reduce fine lines and wrinkles.
These are exciting times for those of us who are seeking to look and feel our best. It’s important to have a good understanding of skin rejuvenation and resurfacing procedures when deciding which anti-aging techniques we want to use to reduce fine lines and wrinkles.
Controlled injury or wounding describes cosmetic techniques that involve deliberately injuring the treatment site in order to stimulate healing and thus actually improve the treatment site. Skin rejuvenation or skin resurfacing procedures often involve controlled injury.
The doctor will remove the topmost layer or layers of the skin and thus stimulate the production of healthy new skin cells along with more collagen and elastin. The client will consequently gain taut new skin with either fewer or no blemishes.
Skin rejuvenation and resurfacing procedures are used to treat the following:
- Acne Scars
- Fine lines and wrinkles
- Age Spots
- Visible blood vessels
- Discolored patches of skin
- Sagging skin
Examples of skin resurfacing procedures can include dermabrasion, laser skin resurfacing, and chemical peels.
Dermabrasion before and after photo below.
What is dermabrasion?
Dermabrasion is a cosmetic procedure used to treat wrinkles and some scars. It is a type of skin resurfacing in which the doctor removes the topmost layer of the skin to stimulate the growth of pristine new skin. Dermabrasion is an outpatient procedure.
The patient will spend two weeks preparing for the procedure by applying a topical cream to the treatment site. On the day of the procedure, the patient will be given a local anesthetic.
The surgeon will use either a wire brush or a motorized wheel studded with diamonds to scrape away the skin’s topmost layers. Dermablading the upper lip takes around 15 minutes.
The patient should keep their head elevated for at least the first day after the procedure. They should also place plastic bags filled with frozen peas on the treatment site to reduce swelling.
They should use plastic bags for 10 minutes for every hour they are awake during the first 48 hours.
The patient should also apply an antibiotic cream to the treatment site to prevent infection. Most patients need only an over-the-counter medication like Tylenol to reduce discomfort. The doctor, however, will prescribe a painkiller if necessary.
The treatment site will appear red immediately after the procedure, but it will fade to pink within five days. Two to five more days after that, the skin will have faded to its normal color. The patient can generally return to work about a week after the procedure.
What is Medical Roll CIT?
Medical roll CIT or collagen induction therapy is a cosmetic procedure used to treat wrinkles and acne scars. It works by stimulating the production of collagen.
Like dermabrasion, it involves controlled injury. Unlike dermabrasion, medical roll CIT can be safely performed on patients with dark skin.
Unlike many skin resurfacing procedures, medical roll CIT, which is also called microneedling, does not involve removing an entire layer of skin. Instead, the doctor uses a handheld device that consists of a medical-grade roller with tiny needles on it.
The needles pierce the skin in the treatment site and thus stimulate the skin’s healing processes to produce new skin cells and new collagen fibers. The latter can help acne scars by filling them in.
Depending on the area being treated, the patient will be given a local anesthetic or an intravenous sedative. The procedure can take anywhere from 10 to 60 minutes.
Needles of different lengths can be used in medical roll CIT; the longer the needles, the more noticeable the results will be. Those results will be permanent since the collagen will be formed in the patient’s own body.
Medical roll CIT also has the advantages of quick recovery time and no risks of pigment change or scarring.
What is a chemical peel?
Like dermabrasion and medical roll CIT, chemical peels are cosmetic treatments that work by removing the topmost layers of the skin to unveil healthy and unblemished new skin.
Different types of chemicals of varying strengths are used in chemical peels, so chemical peels fall into three categories: light or superficial, medium, or deep peels.
Light peels remove the fewest layers, while deep peels remove the most. The doctor will choose the type of peel based on the extent and depth of the scarring. Like dermabrasion, chemical peels typically work better on patients with light skin.
In a light peel, the doctor will use glycolic acid or alpha hydroxy acid (AHA). While many patients don’t need an anesthetic, the doctor may administer a local anesthetic or sedative to keep the patient calm and comfortable.
They will then apply the acid to the treatment site and wait for a set time. The doctor will then use water to wash the acid off and apply a cool lotion.
The entire treatment takes less than an hour, and the patient may immediately resume their usual activities. They will usually need several treatments to get the desired results.
In a medium peel, the doctor uses trichloroacetic acid (TCA). The acid penetrates more deeply than do the chemicals used in light peels. It thus removes more layers of the skin and treats more severe blemishes.
On the other hand, the recovery time can take as long as two weeks, as the old skin sloughs off and the new skin grows in. If the patient needs more than one treatment, the treatments will be spaced at least two months apart.
In a deep peel, the doctor generally uses phenol, which is strong enough to remove even precancerous growths. Deep peels have to be applied to the whole face, and the patient will need only one treatment.
At this time, the doctor will administer both a local anesthetic and a sedative to keep the patient comfortable. The patient should stay home for at least the first week after the procedure.
Then, the new skin will be at first bright pink, but it will fade to normal within two or three months.
The more you learn about anti-aging procedures and how they can affect your skin, the more empowered you will feel before going in for one.
Since our bodies are in a constant state of cellular death and regrowth, it’s always a good idea to discover your needs before scheduling any skincare procedure.
Aging is a fact of life but that doesn’t mean we have to settle for looing old either. Make sure you thoroughly research any medical procedure fully beforehand.
Dr. Andres Bustillo is a board-certified plastic surgeon who has been in practice for over ten years. He is known for his expertise in rhinoplasties, revision rhinoplasties, blepharoplasties, deep plane facelifts, and neck lifts as well as in skin rejuvenation treatments such as dermabrasion procedures in Miami, Florida.
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