Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) and Answers for
Laser Acne Treatments
This page is used for our patient’s to reference and understand the most common acne frequently asked questions for NON-laser and Laser Acne Treatments. If your question does not appear you may call our offices for further inquiry 724-987-3221
Q: What causes acne? (Also – Top 10 reasons how people get acne)
A: Acne occurs when the pores become clogged with dead skin cells and excess sebum. This provides an ideal medium for bacteria to multiply – causing pimples and inflammation. Acne generally begins in puberty but can flare up in adulthood.
Q: What body areas can I get my acne treated?
A: The whole face, neck, back, chest, underarms, arms, bikini line and legs can all be treated. Almost any area, except directly inside the orbital rim of the eyes can be treated with some types of laser, but when using our Lamprobe, radio frequency device, we can treat nearer to the orbital ring.
Q: What are pulsed light, Photofacials or acne treatments like?
A: Your certified laser technician will move the Palomar Lux-V, Cynosure Max-G, Acleara, Lamprobe or other handpieces over areas of the affected skin, pulsing it as it goes. Each pulse sends a beam of light or energy through the skin. An audible tone, a flashing light and a mild sensation on the skin will tell you when the handpiece is being pulsed. The sensation produces little to no discomfort.
Q: How soon will I notice results?
A: Most people notice most results by or after their second treatment. After your first treatment, you usually experience a decrease in the breakout. Sometimes a slight increase can occur, this is because the laser has reached the innermost layer of the skin and has begun the healing process of bringing up bacteria to the skin’s surface (epidermis). Once all of the acne bacteria is brought to the epidermis (and sanitized again by the healing power of light), the skin will begin to resurface, then healing and the bacteria will disperse.
Q: How does IPL (intense pulsed light) work to stop acne?
A: Pulses of filtered light are directed into the skin, where they destroy bacteria or if the additional optional product called levulinic acid is applied to shrink oil glands to clear current cystic or pustule acne breakouts. The light pulses also slow down the production of sebum, which can clog pores – this prevents future acne breakouts.
*note – (PDT) Photodynamic therapy is a special drug treatment that uses light to activate or “turn on” photosensitizing agents that work to reduce over-active oil glands.
The flash of heat may flush blood flow to induce have healing effects and kill bacteria as well. We use a specialized filtered light spectrum handpieces that target different parts of blemishes. Each band of the spectrum has a wavelength that is ideal for different treatments, such as sunspot removal (red and brown spots), hair reduction, age spot removal, and acne treatments. When the handpieces pulse, light’s energy converts the damaged or troublesome cells into heat energy, which is delivered to the dermis (deep layer of skin), leaving the epidermis (outer layer of skin) unharmed. Pulsed light systems are similar to lasers, but with a larger light beam than most lasers for wider coverage and faster, more comfortable treatments.
Q: How long do laser acne results last?
A: Laser treatments can have life-long results if the skin is properly cared for. We recommend investing in the protection of your skin with either of our skin care product lines and doing future maintenance sessions. Dermaplaning or facials can help continue results, once this is achieved.
Q: What are the alternative cosmetic treatments if I don’t want to use a laser?
A: There are many different laser treatments available, depending on the condition of your skin. You could try acne serums, creams, chemical peels, ultrasound or Lamprobe treatments and facials. We recommend coming in for a free consultation to help determine the best route for your individual needs.
More Acne Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How many laser treatments will I need?
A: This differs between patients. It also depends on the area being treated. However, most clients need anywhere from 2 to 5 treatments in 4-week intervals (since the skin is on a 28-day cycle).
Q: Who are the best candidates for laser treatment for acne?
A: The best candidates for laser treatments are those who have acne or acne scars, enlarged pores, rosacea, red spots or a flushed face.
Q: Will the treatments hurt?
A: Pulsed Light Systems use a unique long pulse width that delivers energy to the skin over a relatively long period of time. This makes the pulses safer and more comfortable. You may experience a feeling similar to that of a light rubber band snap on the skin, but most people do not report this sensation as painful.
Q: Is there any downtime?
A: There is minimal downtime after this laser treatment. You can return to your normal routine immediately and even apply your makeup.
Q: What kind of results should I expect?
A: After just one treatment, your skin may become more smooth and have a brighter even tone. Other improvements include: shrunken pore size, reduced fine lines and wrinkles, fading sun and age spots, and patients with Rosacea will notice a decrease in redness after every treatment.
Q: What does it look like after treatment?
A: There are very minimal side effects after photo facials, but this only lasts a few hours. However, vascular issues, such capillaries might less noticeable right away. After the flushed skin and capillaries are gone, your skin will look much younger and rejuvenated.
Q: What should after treatment care involve?
A: Sometimes a mild sunburn-like pinkish sensation, maybe minor swelling, usually lasting 2-3 hrs hours but may last up to a day, but they could be soothed with a cold compress or gel packs. Sometimes there could be a flare of acne, this also can happen after a peel treatment or in the beginning stages of a new oral or topical acne medication. Some blemishes may appear to become temporarily redder. They usually fade after within the week. Following your treatment course, a reduction in the number of lesions and the prevention of new lesion formation can be expected.
Q: How is pulsed light different from a laser?
A: Lasers and Pulsed light systems are similar, but pulsed light systems use a much larger treatment window parameters than most lasers. This spreads light over a wide area of skin and allows faster coverage of skin while delivering a safer but quicker treatment as a result.
Q: How does IPL pulsed light work?
A: Body Beautiful has multiple Systems to choose from (IPL, BBL, Diode, ND Yag, etc…), which give the patient “better and safer options” to choose from. These specialized handpieces which filter light from different parts of the spectrum, each band of the spectrum has a wavelength that is ideal for different treatments, such as hair removal, acne reduction, sunspot removal or leg vein clearance. The multiple IPL handpiece filters light in the ideal band of the spectrum to affect active acne. The selected LuxV handpiece spectrum concentrates the “healing power of light” into the bacteria that target acne breakouts.
A series of treatments at 3-7 week intervals may be required to achieve the desired result of smoother, tighter skin in the face, arms, abdomen or other areas. Your treatment provider will be able to give you a better idea based on which skin conditions including sun spots, age spots, rosacea, birthmarks, freckles, spider veins, acne and acne scars, and other facial blemishes.
Acne Frequently Asked Questions | Body Beautiful Laser Medical Spa can address many of your skin conditions or concerns at our 9 Pittsburgh locations. Call 724 987 3221 to schedule.