Microdermabrasion can be helpful in the treatment of common skin problems ranging from acne scars to sun damage and even more severe problems such as melasma and hyperpigmentation. The procedure can be administered to patients from the age of 12 up to 65 and can be done as frequently as about two weeks depending on the skin’s sensitivity and tolerance. Since the human outer skin typically regenerates itself every 30 days, microdermabrasion has to be done on a regular basis or in weekly sessions in order to record significant improvement on the skin’s cosmetic health. Microdermabrasion is closely related to its mother term, dermabrasion, the latter of which is a deeper exfoliation of the outermost layer of the skin. One of the advantages of microderm over dermabrasion is that it is less risky and has a more rapid recovery rate. Essentially, the deeper the peel, the more time it takes to heel and the more risks involved. Therefore microdermabrasion has very minimal risks and side effects. However, a few possible side effects include the skin’s sensitivity to sunlight, skin tightness, fine broken blood vessels and light bleeding. Although other parts of the body such as the neck, chest, hands and legs can be treated with microdermabrasion, the face is the most common area to be so treated.
Features and Benefits
Microdermabrasion is a general term that refers to the process of applying very tiny rough grains of crystals, diamonds and bristle tips to peel off the outermost surface of the skin. It is a cosmetic technique whose aim is to remove the topmost layer of the skin called the stratum corneum to create a rejuvenating effect and treat common skin problems such as acne scarring and mild discoloration, sun damage and wrinkles. It is in effect a painless, non-surgical procedure meant to get rid of the dead outer covering of the skin by applying fine abrasive crystals and vacuum suction to the skin. Typically, the process requires no needles or anesthetics, just a piece of sandpaper or facial scrub, or more technically, a simple machine composed of a vacuum suction, a connecting tube, a pump and a hand piece.
Microdermabrasion is a simple and non-invasive cosmetic operation which usually takes about two to 60 minutes to perform. It is typically done by a dermatologist or cosmetician with a machine designed specifically for the procedure. It can also be done at home using some special facial scrubs and sandpapers, followed by the application of moisturizing creams and essential oils to the new layer of skin on the surface. Whatever method is used, it remains basically a painless medical procedure which requires no anesthetic or needles. The machine is built with crystals such as sodium chloride, aluminum oxide, magnesium oxide and diamonds which are pressurized by the pump to produce an abrasion of the skin. The vacuum raises a small section of the skin which the machine works on and thereafter removes the crystals and abraded skin cells.
How does the treatment work?
The skin is washed to remove excess oil and dirt. Then, a medical professional targets a stream of fine aluminum oxide crystals over the area. The crystals abrade away old, dead skin cells, which the vacuum then picks up with gentle suction. This promotes the growth of collagen and new, rejuvenated skin. Moisturizers and sun block are then applied to the treated area.
How many treatments are required?
Initially 5 to 8 treatments spaced 7-10 days apart are recommended for most people. Acne scars and or discolorations may require more treatments. Monthly maintenance treatments every 2 or 3 months may be necessary to maintain results.
Is Microdermabrasion safe?
Microdermabrasion is a safe and common procedure. Unlike laser resurfacing or chemical peels, this procedure is not traumatic and therefore there is no downtime to allow for healing and recovery. But, as always, provide your full medical history and follow your pre and post-treatment instructions.
Can I go back to work after a microdermabrasion treatment?
YES!!!!! A few patients do notice their skin feeling tight immediately after the treatment as if the skin has been exposed to the sun or wind. You might experience a slight dryness of the skin depending upon your skin type. An effective moisturizer is applied after the treatment to prevent this drying of the skin. The skin might appear slightly red for the remainder of the day. Additionally, the patient is asked to refrain from using makeup on the day of the treatment to give the skin chance to breathe and regenerate itself.
Initially, you may feel a very mild scratching sensation as the crystals make contact with the skin. As the treatments continue, this experience compares to a deep massage. Mild redness may occur for ½ an hour to one day depending on the aggressiveness of the program.
Will there be any downtime?
One of the advantages of Microdermabrasion is that it has no downtime. You can return to your normal routine and apply cosmetics directly after treatment.
Why is microdermabrasion called the “lunchtime face lift”?
Because microdermabrasion requires no anesthesia and leaves the skin slightly flushed for just a few hours the nickname “lunchtime face lift” has been coined by patients because of its quick recovery time. Microdermabrasion is an excellent option for people who cannot take time off from work for the deeper chemical peels or laser therapy treatments.
What are the results?
Our Medical-Grade Microdermabrasion equipment provides a gentle alternative in facial rejuvenation. It has proven to be effective in the treatment of the following conditions:
fine lines; enlarged or clogged pores; mild acne and complexion issues; sun damage; superficial age spots; scaly skin lesions also called keratoses; hyper-pigmentation; uneven skin tone; oily skin; dry/patchy skin; acne scarring; black/white heads; stretch marks; and dull, lifeless skin. In addition, most patients experience dramatic improvements in the color, tone, and texture of treated areas.
In general, microdermabrasion results in thicker, healthier, more youthful looking skin. Over the course of a full set of treatments, the body will produce new layers of skin containing higher levels of elastin and collagen. This, in turn, improves the complexion and gives the skin a more radiant, vibrant glow.
How soon will results appear?
Microdermabrasion results are usually immediate and noticeable. Results improve with multiple treatments and vary depending on your individual skin quality.
How long does a Microdermabrasion treatment last?
A Microdermabrasion facial treatment lasts approximately half an hour. Additional time is required for added areas.
Who are candidates for Microdermabrasion?
The ideal candidates for microdermabrasion are healthy adults who have relatively minor skin conditions or imperfections and realistic expectations about what microdermabrasion can and cannot do. Microdermabrasion works well for damaged skin, whether affected by acne, sun damage or aging; and skin of any type or color.
“I have mild acne and some acne scarring (not really bad just some discoloration) that I was looking to get rid of. I thought that I would try some microdermabrasion sessions first before spending the time and money on laser treatment. I am so glad that I did! The procedure was pretty much pain free and I left feeling much fresher. I definitely notice a difference in my face. My skin is much smoother”.
“I go in about once every few months to get microdermabrasion done to clean up my skin. It exfoliates really well for me and leaves my skin looking refreshed and so soft! I love the treatments, and as long as I can keep affording to go in, I will continue with them”.
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