After years of exposure to the sun
and the stresses of daily living, your skin may not be as
smooth and supple as it once was. Laugh
lines may be etched around the corners of your mouth or
age spots may be popping up on your face and hands. Luckily,
you don't have to take these signs of aging lying down. Today,
there are a wide variety of treatments you can choose from
to help eliminate skin damage.
Alpha Hydroxy Acid
Also known as ascorbic acid, alpha hydroxy acid is used to
improve oily skin, prevent acne, and help slough off dead
skin cells, making your face look more radiant. You'll find
alphy hydroxy acid in many over-the-counter skin care products
that can be used in your home.
Chemical peeling is a technique used to treat fine lines under
the eyes and around the mouth, as well as age spots, sun-damaged
skin, mild scarring, freckles, and skin discoloration. In
this treatment, the physician applies a chemical solution
to small areas of the skin, which causes it to blister and
eventually peel off. The new, regenerated skin is usually
smoother and less wrinkled than the old skin. During a peel,
patients may experience a warm or hot sensation for about
5 to 10 minutes, followed by a stinging sensation. A deeper
peel may require pain medication during or after the procedure.
Facials Deep-cleansing facials are used to unclog pores, control
oil, reduce blemishes, and normalize the skin. During this
treatment, usually administered at spas and salons, the face
is cleansed and gently exfoliated to remove dull surface skin
cells. Moist steam is directed towards the skin to unclog
pores and clear blemishes. The face is usually massaged and
then treated with a mask to stimulate circulation and revitalize
Laser treatments work by applying intense heat or light to
vaporize skin tissue and reduce the appearance of wrinkles,
fine lines, acne scars, and blemishes. During this relatively
painless procedure, the dermatologist uses a wand-like handpiece
to zap the skin. There are several different types of laser
Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Lasers - Are the latest invention in laser
technology. This type of laser delivers short bursts of extremely
high-energy light to the skin and vaporizes the tissue one
layer at a time.
Erbium (ER) Lasers - Penetrate the
skin, scattering the light's heat through water molecules
in the body. This type of laser treatment is commonly used
on patients who have superficial to moderate facial wrinkles,
mild surface scars, or splotchy skin discolorations.
Nonablative Lasers - Work beneath the surface of the skin to
stimulate collagen growth and tighten underlying skin. This
technique improves skin tone, removes fine lines, and repairs
mild to moderate skin damage.
This resurfacing technique is used to treat age spots, skin
lesions, wrinkles, sun damage, and tattoos. During the dermabrasion procedure,
the surgeon freezes the patient's skin with a special spray,
then removes or "sands" the skin with a machine that has a
high-speed abrasive wheel or brush. Anesthesia may be given
to the patient prior to surgery.
With this technique, doctors use a vacuum device to deliver
a pressurized stream of fine, sand-like aluminum oxide crystals
that exfoliate the skin. The vacuum then sucks up the dead
skin cells, which helps smooth fine lines and eliminate age
spots. The procedure is noninvasive and lasts about 30 minutes.
Microdermabrasion is provided in a series of five sessions,
given at one- to two-week intervals.
can help turn back the clock on your skin's appearance. It
may not stop the clock, but dermatology can sure help restore
your skin to a healthier and younger looking appearance. Most
of these dermatology procedures require a minimum amount of
time and involves a minimal amount of pain. In fact some of
the procedures, such as Botox® injections and Collagen treatments,
only take a matter of minutes. So patients can go see their
dermatologist during their lunch break, and come back looking
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