Laser Skin Rejuvenation in Virginia Beach
Fractional CO2 Laser (DOT Therapy)
Laser skin rejuvenation (or laser skin resurfacing) is a treatment to reduce facial wrinkles and skin irregularities, such as sun damage, blemishes, or acne scars. Many patients recognize a change in the texture and quality of the skin as they age. As the skin loses elasticity and collagen, fine lines and wrinkles appear. The uniform color of the skin may also change as darker and lighter spots form. If you have spent years in the sun, then you know what it can do to your skin. Wrinkles, fine lines, skin discoloration, sunspots, surface roughness, and mild skin laxity may be reduced or eliminated by laser skin resurfacing at Virginia Beach's Ben Hugo Plastic Surgery, especially when coupled with careful skin care.
- Excellent results can be achieved with a SINGLE LASER SKIN REJUVENATION TREATMENT
- Look better with a fresh healthy glow
- Eliminate that tired look, wrinkles and dull skin
- Build NEW COLLAGEN, slow the aging process, and improve skin health
- Results of a single treatment will last up to five years (mild tightening for two to three years)
What is Fractional CO2 Laser Resurfacing (DOT Therapy)?
You may have heard of laser skin resurfacing before, and perhaps even of CO2 lasers. While laser treatments are effective when used to even out skin tone and smooth wrinkles, they have traditionally come with a weeks-long recovery period and could be used only on the face, since skin does not heal as efficiently in other areas where laser skin rejuvenation might be desired, such as the décolletage or neck.
Historically, patients seeking laser therapy had two options: CO2 and erbium, both of which would essentially burn away the outermost layer of skin. The creation of fractionated CO2 lasers offered a new laser skin rejuvenation option, as it operates on the same basic principle, but removes only "columns" of skin, as opposed to entire swaths of it.
More recent advancements in laser skin rejuvenation led to the development of DOT Therapy. DOT (Dermal Optical Thermolysis) Therapy is an excellent approach for laser skin rejuvenation. Dr. Hugo uses the SmartXide HP 50 watt laser manufactured by Deka Medical Inc. Though the device is a CO2 laser, it can be used in a variety of areas besides the face, and the associated recovery period is greatly reduced.
It accomplishes this by applying a pattern of tiny scanned pulses of laser energy to your skin, precisely creating thousands of microscopic perforations (known as DOTs). This induces immediate skin tightening and stimulates new collagen growth.
As laser skin rejuvenation kickstarts new collagen production, the aesthetic benefits become increasingly apparent in the days and weeks after a treatment session.
The DOT Difference
As noted above, traditional laser skin resurfacing is effective, but some patients would prefer to avoid the technique's biggest drawbacks.
Unlike the older generation of CO2 and Erbium lasers, DOT Therapy laser skin rejuvenation leaves islands of healthy tissue surrounding the microscopic DOTs. This enables your skin to repair itself more rapidly and reduces the risk of infection, scars, and bleaching of the skin, as there is not a single, large treated area that must heal. Despite the use of pulsing energy, this laser skin rejuvenation technique keeps the skin surface intact and does not cause blisters or scabs.
DOT Therapy is also customizable, unlike the "one size fits all" model of earlier generations of CO2 lasers. Settings on the DOT device may be adjusted, allowing for flexibility, customized laser skin rejuvenation applications, and greater precision.
Because of these advances in laser skin rejuvenation, Dr. Hugo finds that DOT Therapy is a preferable treatment for patients looking to improve their appearance by correcting any number of skin conditions.
Is Laser Skin Rejuvenation Right for Me?
Common problems that may be addressed by laser skin rejuvenation include:
- Thin skin and laxity
- Changes in skin texture, including fine lines and wrinkles
- Irregular pigmentation (age spots or sun spots)
- Surface roughness
- Large pore size
This laser skin rejuvenation dramatically improves skin health, slows the aging process of the skin, and builds new collagen at any age. Fractional CO2 laser is contraindicated in persons with olive or dark skin, meaning it works best for patients with lighter skin tones. Patients who have an active case of acne may want to consider other treatments instead of or prior to laser skin rejuvenation to help them achieve their aesthetic goals.
Dr. Ben Hugo
Whether your needs are surgical or you are simply looking to rejuvenate your appearance, Dr. Hugo and his qualified staff welcome you. Learn more about Dr. Hugo, his qualifications, and how he can help you.
Learn more about Dr. Hugo, his qualifications, and how he can help you.
The Laser Skin Rejuvenation Procedure
The one-hour laser skin resurfacing treatment is performed as an outpatient office procedure. A typical laser skin rejuvenation treatment area includes the entire face and forehead, upper and lower eyelids, lips, neck, and chest (décolletage).
Prior to the application of any laser, your skin will be cleaned, and a topical local anesthetic cream will be applied. Oral medications are also administered to make the laser skin rejuvenation procedure more comfortable. You may be given eye protection, if necessary.
After the treatment, cold compresses and lotions are applied. The sunburn sensation lasts about three hours and is usually easily controlled with Tylenol. Dr. Hugo also reminds his patients to wear special sunscreen in the days after their laser skin rejuvenation treatment session, as areas treated by the procedure, especially on the face, are particularly susceptible to damage from UV radiation. He will also provide more detailed laser skin rejuvenation aftercare instructions, which may include directions for cleaning the treated areas as necessary, tips on staying moisturized, and suggestions for maximizing the aesthetic outcome while staying healthy.
While some patients might notice results beginning to show in the days after their initial laser skin rejuvenation treatment, the newly stimulated collagen takes time to grow, so the aesthetic results will continue to improve gradually over time.
DOT Therapy Treatment Plan
In most cases, excellent results can be achieved with a single fractional CO2 laser treatment. However, patients with deep lines, severe wrinkling, multiple brown spots, and/or acne scars may benefit from a series of laser skin rejuvenation treatments spaced six to 12 months apart. Every treatment builds more collagen, improving skin health without damage to the skin.
Treatment parameters and laser settings can be geared to your lifestyle. You may choose to undergo one aggressive fractional CO2 laser treatment or a series of less aggressive laser skin rejuvenation treatments in order to achieve an optimal result.
A "light" fractional CO2 laser resurfacing has a shorter recovery. Post-treatment appearance is similar to a moderate sunburn, and time off work is minimal (usually three or four days).
"Heavy" laser skin rejuvenation treatments carry more prolonged recovery periods with redness and puffiness lasting a week (down-time usually six or seven days). Your skin will usually flake for a week or longer, similar to a sunburn without blisters, oozing, or scabs. Make-up can be applied six or seven days after the laser skin rejuvenation treatment.
With an excellent artistic sense, Dr. Hugo has built a reputation for always providing natural results for his patients. Due to his skill, experience, attention to detail and meticulous planning, Dr. Hugo's patients are consistently satisfied and pleased with his work. Before and after photos of laser skin rejuvenation patients here in the Virginia Beach area are available to help you visualize the possibilities.
Note that laser skin rejuvenation improves the look of your skin, but it doesn't prevent it from continuing to age. The formation of new collagen will help to create a more youthful look, and the benefits can last for years, but maintenance treatments or other procedures will be necessary to preserve the look.
More On Collagen
Collagen is a protein found throughout the body. It keeps skin both firm and elastic, helping the skin to maintain its structure as well as a youthful roundness by providing a framework for cells to grow. A person's stores of collagen diminish over time, as does collagen production, which leads to a decline in the presence of collagen in the skin over a series of decades. The first early signs of aging typically begin to show in your 20s, and they continue to intensify throughout your 30s, 40s, and 50s.
The breakdown of collagen in the skin due to the natural aging process and damage from ultraviolet rays leads to the development of skin conditions commonly associated with aging. Most often, collagen loss, coupled with a lack of another vital skin component known as elastin, leads most visibly to wrinkles and sagging.
Dermal fillers, such as Juvéderm®, serve to temporarily replace volume lost as collagen diminishes. Injections of a smooth gel can physically round out areas that have sunken in and fill in folds that have developed.
Laser skin rejuvenation is not a collagen replacement, but stimulates new collagen production.
More Than Laser Skin Rejuvenation
A surgical option, such as a facelift, can address skin laxity and some wrinkles, though its primary function is to provide improved contours. It does not, however, impact the texture of the skin itself, which makes laser skin rejuvenation an ideal complement for patients seeking to achieve an overall rejuvenated appearance. The laser treatment may follow a facelift surgery, though Dr. Hugo can explain more about how the two efforts are compatible and what you should know about the timing of each if you want to enjoy their combined benefits.
Sculptra® is another option for people who want to address collagen loss. Similar to a dermal filler, Sculptra® is injected to the skin, but once there, it carries out a different function by stimulating collagen growth to smooth wrinkles and provide a lifting effect. Talk to Dr. Ben Hugo and his team to determine whether this injectable or laser skin rejuvenation would best suit your collagen-related aesthetic needs.
Ben Hugo Plastic Surgery also offers other skin rejuvenation procedures, including vein treatment to eliminate red spots, visible capillaries, and spider veins. CoolSculpting®, which reduces fat deposits by removing heat energy from targeted areas and causing the unwanted fat there to break down, can also contribute to an improved look.