Side Effects of Laser Hair Removal

 نتيجة بحث الصور عن ‪Laser Hair Removal‬‏
Laser hair removal is considered a medical treatment, and just like all other medical treatments,  it carries the risk of possible side effects. The chance of developing one or more of the existing side effects partially depend on your skin characteristics. The side effects of laser hair removal can be temporary or permanent.

The possibility of developing a temporary side effect is much higher than developing a permanent one after laser hair removal. A temporary side effect can last anywhere from a day to several  months before it goes away completely. The temporary side effects that can be experienced after laser hair removals include pain, blistering, swelling, redness, irritation, and hyperpigmentation.

Some people describe the discomfort they feel during and after their laser hair removal treatment as a feeling of pain.  This feeling exists, both during the procedure, and after it is finished.  During the treatment process, the feeling of discomfort can be lessened by the use of a local anesthetic.  For the days following the procedure, the pain can be alleviated through the use of over-the-counter or prescribed pain medication.

Swelling typically occurs at, or near, the area that was treated for hair removal. Topical treatments, such as creams or ointments, generally relieve the swelling.  This side effect may or may not be particularly bothersome, depending upon the area that was treated with laser hair removal.

If redness develops as a side effect of laser hair removal, it can be treated with a topical cream or ointment.  This side effect usually resembles a mild sunburn.

Blistering can be a very painful, embarrassing, and noticeable side effect of laser treatment.  Some people do not feel comfortable being seen if they have blisters.  If you are one of these people, it is best to schedule your laser hair removal treatments at a time when it will minimize your exposure to other people.

A temporary darkening of the skin of the treated area is called hyperpigmentation.  Generally, this temporary side affect of laser hair removal will disappear on its own.  Often, the area affected by hyperpigmentation can be covered with makeup.

In addition to the temporary side effects, there is also the possibility of permanent or long-term skin damage.  If you've made the decision to have laser hair removal, you must be prepared to accept these risks.  Permanent side effects include skin discoloration, scarring, and burns.

If skin discoloration does occur, it is generally a permanent lightning of the skin in the area that was treated. The wavelengths of the laser beam are made to attack the dark pigmentation in the hair follicle.  Sometimes dark colored skin can also be affected.  This side effect can be emotionally damaging, although it is not painful.

Scarring, mostly occurs by experiencing accidental over treatment or by being treated by someone with minimal training.  It is very important to make sure that your laser hair removal treatments are being done by a qualified, experienced professional technician.

Burns are a very rare occurrence, and they usually are caused by an inexperienced, less qualified technician.

The risks and side effects associated with laser hair removal can be minimized by making sure that the treatments are done by a qualified professional.  It is also important to tell your practitioner of any hormonal or family conditions that may affect your treatment.  Tanning and unprotected exposure to the sun should be avoided for several weeks before treatment.
Safety Issues Regarding Laser Hair Removal

Safety issues regarding laser hair removal relate to both clients and technicians. These safety issues are very different than those involving other forms of epilation.  There are no concerns of drawing blood, contaminating probes, or risking infection.  However, there are concerns regarding burns and eye safety.  Several organizations have laid down guidelines to ensure the safety  of both the clients and technicians. These organizations include The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, The American National Standards Institute, The Food and Drug Administration, The Center for Devices and Radiological Health, and The Society for Clinical and Medical Hair Removal.

All laser hair removal devices in the United States are subject to very strict mandatory performance standards.  They also must meet the federal laser product performance standard, which includes specifying their safety features, both for the benefit of the patient and technician.

It is best to purchase new laser hair removal equipment.  If used equipment must be purchased, it should only be bought from a qualified distributor with the assurance that it has been thoroughly checked and serviced.  The equipment should also be guaranteed..

The room that is used for laser hair removal can be used for other treatments.  However, it must be set up in accordance with the strict guidelines that are associated with the use of laser equipment.  Setting up the room  the proper way is usually done by the equipment distributor or the manufacturer.

The laser hair removal room should have a door  that can be locked during treatment. There should be a warning light outside the door to let others know that treatment is being done and they should not enter.  There should be protective eyewear, outside of the door for people who may need to enter during a treatment.  They should not be any windows in the room, however if there are windows they should be blacked out with protective coverings.  It is very important to that the electrical outlet has its own circuit breaker.  It also must be grounded, and have the proper amperage and voltage.  The room should not have any mirrors or reflective surfaces in it.

Laser hair removal equipment should be on a flat surface and have plenty of ventilation around it.  This equipment should only be serviced and calibrated according to the manufacturer's guidelines for that particular device.  It should be regularly cleaned of any carbon buildup that may occur. When the laser equipment is not in use the key should be removed.

It is important that the operator of the laser hair removal device be well trained and qualified.  This training should be in all areas including histology and client care. The technician should not wear any reflective clothing or jewelry.  The technician, along with any other person in the room, is required to wear ANSI approved protected our eyewear in order to avoid laser blindness.

The client should  receive a thorough and detailed consultation, pre and post care instructions,  and a patch test before the laser hair removal treatment begins. It is also important that the client understands the benefits and risks of the treatment.  During the laser hair removal process the client should wear ANSI approved protective eyewear and be instructed to keep the eyewear on throughout the treatment.

Laser Hair Removal Devices
نتيجة بحث الصور عن ‪Laser Hair Removal‬‏

There are several different types of laser hair removal devices available today.  These are alexandrite lasers, diode lasers, ruby lasers, and NeoDymium Yttrium Aluminum Garnets, which is commonly referred to as Nd:YAGs.

Alexandrite lasers became available for use in laser hair removal in 1997  when they were cleared by the FDA.  Alexandrite lasers produce light beams in the red spectrum of visible light.
Their wavelength is 755 nanometers which is very effective but only safe on light skin. Generally, alexandrite lasers are considered long pulsed and because of this produce greater depth penetration. Five different types of the alexandrite laser are available. These include the Apogee, GentleLase, Epicare, Epitouch Alex, and Ultrawave II-III.

The  FDA also cleared diode lasers for use in 1997 as an effective method of permanent hair reduction.  Diode lasers produce a wavelength of 800 nanometers with pulse widths of 5-400 milliseconds. This type of laser has proved successful in the treatment of ingrown eyelashes and works very well on dark hair. The Light SheerXC is a diode laser that is extremely powerful.  Other diode lasers include EpiStar, Apex-800, Iridex, and Mediostar.

Ruby lasers were also cleared by the FDA for laser hair removal in 1997, however, they did not prove as effective.  Clinical research showed that the laser damage did not extend far enough down into the hair shafts to result in permanent laser hair removal.  Originally there were five types of ruby lasers, of which only two are still available for commercial use. A Ruby lasers operate on a shorter wavelength system of only 694 nanometers.

NeoDymium Yttrium Aluminum Garnets have a longer wavelength which makes them more effective for longer term, and according to some people, even permanent laser hair removal. There are two types of Nd:YAGs lasers. These are the Q switched and the long pulse.  All Nd:YAGs produce a wavelength of 1064 nanometers. The Q, switched NeoDymium Yttrium Aluminum Garnets has a very short pulse of about one nanosecond. Long pulse NeoDymium Yttrium Aluminum Garnets have a pulse of about a millisecond and can be used on all skin types.

The pulse duration, or pulse width, of lasers used for hair removal is the timing of the light energy.  It is usually measured in milliseconds. Most lasers used for hair removal have a maximum pulse duration in the 20 to 40 millisecond range. Longer pulse widths are generally considered more effective and produce fewer side effects.

Each type of laser produces a specific spot size which is measured in millimeters.  The spot size is the size, or width, of the beam of light at the laser sends out.  A spot size of seven to 10 mm is considered acceptable for laser hair removal.

Most lasers have three main parts, an energy source, and active medium, and an optical cavity, also known as a resonator. The energy source is a device that supplies energy to the active medium.  Laser hair removal devices use electricity as their energy source. The element of the active medium contains atoms that can both absorb and store the energy.  The optical cavity is the part of the laser that contains the active medium. Lasers are defined by the elements they use.
How Laser Hair Removal Works on Different Skin Types and Hair Color

The effectiveness of laser hair removal is dependent upon several factors including skin type and hair color. Lesser factors include the condition of the skin, sun exposure, and the cycle of the hair.

There are four basic skin types -  Caucasian European, African descent, Eastern Asian, and Middle Eastern / Mediterranean. Each of these four skin types have several things in common, such as the thickness of the dermis and epidermis, the number of hair follicles, and the skin's layered components. However, there are many characteristics of each skin type that are very different.

Caucasian Europeans have the most varied skin type of all the groups.  This group has light skin with great variation in skin color amongst the people  which is determined by heredity.  The    people from this group are the best candidates for laser hair removal.  Generally, they will need fewer treatments and attain the best results.  Overall, the effectiveness of laser hair removal on individuals from this group is dependent upon a combination of their hair and skin color.

Individuals of African descent, with dark brown skin or poor candidates for laser hair removal.  This is because the laser light is absorbed into the skin pigment, causing possible burns, scars, and keloids.  The dark skin causes the laser beam to b drawn away from its target area.

People in Eastern Asian descent, which  includes China, Japan and Korea, generally have the least amount of facial and body hair.  They are usually good candidates for laser hair removal because their hair is dark, and they have minimal skin pigmentation.

Middle Eastern and Mediterranean people tend to have the most facial and body hair.  Their skin color can very from dark white to medium brown.  Those people with lighter skin generally make better candidates for laser hair removal.  Skin bleaching agents, such as 4% hydroquinone,  are sometimes used by people in this group to lighten the skin as much as possible.  This is done to make the laser treatment as effective as possible and reduce the risk of burning the skin.  This ethnic group has an increased risk of hyperpigmentation.

Hair color combines with skin type to further determine the effects of laser hair removal.  Black or dark brown hair is usually coarser and contains the most pigmentation.  These factors make it the  easiest to treat because the laser light is most easily absorbed by the dark pigmentation. Lighter brown hair usually requires more treatments than darker hair.  The lighter the hair color, the more difficult laser hair removal becomes.  Red and light blonde hair contain phemelianin pigment which makes light absorption very difficult. Grey or white hair does not contain any pigmentation at all, therefor,  they cannot absorb light. The Fitzpatrick Skin Phototype Scale and the Lancer Ethnicity Scale are used by professional technicians to determine the effectiveness of laser hair removal based on skin type and hair color.

The best combination of skin type and hair color for laser hair removal is light skin with dark hair. These people will have the best results with the least treatments.

Basic  Laser Hair Removal Terminology
نتيجة بحث الصور عن ‪Laser Hair Removal‬‏

It is important to understand the basic terminology used in laser hair removal techniques.  This gives  you a better understanding of what the procedure entails.  It also helps to put many people at ease to completely understand the words used in the treatment.

Absorption is the uptake of one substance into another.

Active medium is the part of the laser that absorbs and stores energy.

American bikini wax, is a standard bikini wax in which hair is removed from either side of the panty line at the top of the thigh.

Anagen is the growth phase in the hair cycle in which a new hair is synthesized.

Brazilian bikini wax, is a bikini wax in which all of the hair is removed in the pubic region, including the hair on the buttocks and labia.

Catagen is a transitional stage of a hair's growth cycle, occurring between the growth and resting stages.

Chromophore is a group of atoms in  a molecule that produces color through selective light absorption.

Coherent light are light waves that travel in parallel, and in the same direction.

Dermal scattering is the change that occurs between the laser's spot size at the surface of the skin and the spot size deeper in the tissue.

Dermis is the underlying or inner layer of the skin.

Electrons are stable, negatively charged elementary particles that orbit the nucleus of an atom. 

Energy source is the device in the laser that supplies energy to the active medium.

Epidermis is the thin outermost layer of the skin.

Excited states is the conditions of a physical system in which the energy level is higher than the lowest possible level.

Fissure is a crack or cut in the skin.

French bikini wax, is a bikini wax in which all of the hair is removed from the pubic region except for a stripe of hair on the pubis.

Hair follicle bulb is the bulbous base of the hair follicle that houses the dermal papilla.
Keloids scars are raised areas of fibrous tissue.

Melanin are grains of pigment that give hair and skin its color.

Monochromatic light is of one wavelength, and therefore appears as one color.

Nanometers are each one billionth of a meter.

Optical cavity is a part of the laser that contains the active medium.

Polychromatic light consists of light of multiple wavelengths, appearing as different colors.

Pulse duration is the duration of an individual pulse of laser light, which is usually measured in milli-seconds.

Selective photothermolysis is the selective targeting of an area using a specific wavelength to absorb light into that target area sufficient to damage the tissue of the target while allowing the surrounding area to remain relatively untouched.

Spontaneous emission is the process or an excited atom, after holding extra energy for a fraction of a second, releases its energy as another photon then falls back to its grounded state.

Spot size is the width of a laser beam.

Terminal hair is hair found on the scalp arms legs Alexa lay in pubic areas.

Vellus hair is generally fine, non-pigmented hair found on the face that is often called peach fuzz.
 
Wavelength is the distance between two consecutive peaks or troughs in a wave.



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