Monday, February 28, 2011
What to do about Unwanted Hair...
Laser hair removal is done by laser energy (or light) delivered into the skin where the hair follicles are. The laser energy is absorbed through either a component within hair and skin called melanin or hemoglobin which feeds the hair follicle depending on the type of laser. As the energy is absorbed, it creates an increase of heat and thus the follicle dies. The laser penetrates the skin but it is absorbed by the follicle. Most patients only have the sensation of heat if they feel anything at all. There are no permanent side effects nor is there collateral damage to the skin itself.
Hair grows in cycles. Basically it is comparable to the four seasons. At any given time there are multiple hair follicles in the process of a growth or resting season. The spring would be when a hair follicle is just starting to produce hair. It progresses into the active growth period, or anagen period, where the hair is deeply rooted into the follicle. It is during this time that the laser treatment is most effectively absorbed. The hair you find in your brush or comb in the morning is hair that is in the resting stage of growth, or telogen phase. Hair in this stage will not readily absorb the laser energy. Laser treatments are timed to occur during the growth cycles. The average person has around 6 growth cycles in a year.
There are multiple types of lasers. However, the Fotona Nd:Yag laser is considered to be the gold standard in that it is absorbed primarily by the hemoglobin; thus it is safe for individuals with darker skin, as well as being accompanied by a computerized handheld scanner. The scanner increases the speed and efficiency of the treatment ensuring that there is 100% coverage of the treatment area and treats multiple hair follicles at the same time.
Overall, laser treatment is a safe, highly cost effective approach to moving from the world of shaving and wax to a more permanent solution. If you would like more information or would like to schedule a FREE no obligation consultation, visit us at Eastside Family Health Center or call us at 425-899-2525.