Spots, Scars, and Stretch Marks: Lasers Can Treat Them All

There’s no such thing as perfection, but we all want to look as good as we can. No one loves age spots, scars, acne pits, or stretch marks, so if they can be reduced or eliminated, that’s fantastic. Keep in mind that all of these skin conditions affect both men and women, even stretch marks. While they primarily seem to be discussed in conjunction with pregnancy, they can also form during puberty and when your weight fluctuates rapidly.

HK Dermatology in San Juan Capistrano, California offers both medical and cosmetic services for all of these issues and more. Dr. Norma Kassardjian, MD, Atoussa Cameron, NP-BC, JoAnn Coker, MSN, FNP-C and Michele Horwich, RN all have the expertise to treat a variety of skin conditions with many different, ground-breaking procedures, including lasers. When you come in we’ll discuss all of your concerns and determine the best way to proceed.

Skin conditions laser can fix

Age Spots - Age spots, also known as liver spots, can appear on areas of the skin normally exposed to the sun, like the face, shoulders, arms and hands. They’re flat and usually brown or black and can vary in size. If they’re not raised or growing rapidly, they’re primarily a cosmetic concern, but that doesn’t make them any more pleasant to look at. Being smart with sunscreen and covering yourself up will prevent them, but if you want to remove the ones you already have, check in with the doctor and discuss the laser therapy option.

Scars - Scars are more obvious features than age spots, which in turn can make you that much more uncomfortably self-aware. Scars can come from acne, a past surgery, a burn, a cut, or another injury. In addition to not looking great, scars can:

And if you scratch or pick at the scar, it can aggravate the healing process and make it stand out more. Lasers can help reduce the appearance of scars.

Stretch Marks - Lasers can also work wonders on stretch marks. These initially red, eventually silverish lines form when the skin is stretched or shrunk too rapidly for its normal elastic properties. The lines are essentially light scars that form as the skin’s layers heal.

Skin Laxity - Lasers may help with skin laxity as the application of heat promotes the production of collagen, a structural protein vital for healthy skin. Fractional laser skin resurfacing is a method that is used to treat or minimize a number of skin conditions such as scarring, texture, fine lines, laxity, and melasma. Fractional resurfacing with the Icon 1540 is much less invasive compared to ablative laser procedures, resulting in a faster recovery time. Most patients experience minimal downtime, with some mild redness and swelling for a couple of days.

Types of Laser

Laser Resurfacing - There are two common types of laser resurfacing, ablative and non-ablative. Ablative laser procedures are more aggressive for greater correction, but also with greater downtime and risks. Both put out short pulses of light that are absorbed by the outermost layer of skin, the epidermis, vaporizing the damaged area it touches and revealing the healthy layers beneath. The epidermis reforms over time.

One of the premier fractional lasers is the Palomar Icon 1540, a non-ablative erbium laser. This laser delivers light to the skin through an array of high precision microbeams that penetrate the skin deep into the dermis. Fractional skin resurfacing with the 1540 nm erbium laser is also much safer and avoids the side effects and complications that are associated with non-fractionated lasers, but as with many other treatments, people will react differently.

IPL Phototherapy - Also known as intense pulse light, the ICON system by Palomar uses  Optimised Light™ photorejuvenation technology, which delivers gentle pulses of intense, optimised light to regions of unwanted pigmentation and facial vessels. Dramatic rejuvenation of the skin is possible to reduce the appearance of sunspots, age spots, spider veins, rosacea and capillaries.

What to expect during laser procedures

Some people may feel no pain, while others may feel some slight discomfort, depending on which area is being treated. Many have compared it to the feeling of a rubber band snapping on your skin.

Laser treatments can last from five to 30 minutes, depending on what body part is being worked on. You’ll have no downtime, and after three to five sessions, you’ll be happy and confident with the way you look. Call us at 949-248-1632 for an appointment or book right here online, and you can even take a virtual tour if you’d like. Let us here at HK Dermatology help you and your skin with all of your cosmetic and medical needs.

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