How Does Aerolase Work?

It can feel the odds are stacked against you in trying to obtain perfect skin. Lines, wrinkles, acne, and hyperpigmentation can quickly creep in and dash your hopes of a porcelain complexion. Nobody should strive for perfection, and you're beautiful just the way you are, but treatment can correct concerns that erode confidence. At Chevy Chase Facial Plastic Surgery in Bethesda, MD, we recommend Aerolase for anyone who wants a more refined appearance.

How Does Aerolase Work?

Few cosmetic treatments can be described as one-size-fits-all approaches, but Aerolase is just that. It uses a 650-microsecond pulse duration that is less than your skin's thermal relaxation time. What does this mean? The skin has time to naturally cool itself between pulses to eliminate the risk for burns and/or changes to your skin's pigment. The heat emitted from the handpiece is delivered in a very targeted manner. Only precise concerns, such as scars and acne, retain that heat. At the same time, surrounding skin does not become hot or damaged. This allows us to correct concerns with unprecedented precision. In contrast, lasers that emit longer pulses cause more heat retention within the skin; this effect increases discomfort and makes treatment unsuitable for certain skin tones and types.

A More Rejuvenated Appearance

This laser is designed to target specific elements in skin tissues: water, hemoglobin, and melanin. The presence of these elements naturally contributes to the skin's aging process, and by directly targeting them, the laser delivers full rejuvenation. This treatment is especially effective at correcting and preventing acne. It penetrates deep into the skin and, with its highly safe and tolerable pulse, reduces sebum production. The technology also suppresses inflammation and destroys bacteria responsible for causing acne. The combination of these effects clears the complexion and keeps future breakouts at bay.

Collagen Production

The heat energy that penetrates deep into the skin's tissues additionally supports collagen production. This fiber is the cornerstone of skin health. It gives skin its unique shape and structure, lifting tissues so they neatly skim bones for a smooth and youthful appearance. Collagen also plumps tissues so pesky lines and wrinkles disappear. And because collagen is a component of the body's natural healing process, your skin will look better and its internal health will improve. Tissues will grow stronger and thicker to restore a softer texture and brighter glow. Last but not least, collagen can diminish the appearance of acne scars and leave you looking lit from within.

Understanding This Remarkable Laser

All laser light treatments work by targeting certain colors within the skin. Once those colors are located, the lasers "super-heat" them to create controlled injuries that prompt the body to enter a healing phase. This laser is unique because it delivers unrivaled results in rejuvenating skin and turning back the hands of time. That is to say, it's a great anti-aging treatment. You might think of it as a reworked ND:YAG laser, a non-ablative laser long heralded for refreshing skin and removing unwanted hair.

Able To Correct Many Concerns

This treatment has 36 different FDA cleared indications, meaning it's effective for clearing a variety of concerns. Some of those most commonly treated include:
  • Rosacea
  • Active acne
  • Acne scarring
  • Wrinkles
  • Fine lines
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Facial hair
  • Spider veins
  • Psoriasis
  • Skin tags
  • Warts
  • Melasma
  • Bruises
 

What To Expect During Treatment

Most sessions start with a thorough cleansing of your skin. We want to remove any oils or lotions to ensure these substances don't interfere with the laser's efficiency. A member of our staff will then use the wand to direct heat to targeted areas. The handheld device never touches your skin. It's kept about an inch away to further protect surrounding tissues. This treatment is non-invasive, and we employ the lowest heat setting possible to achieve the desired results. To further highlight the safety of this laser, no side effects are listed as being likely following treatment. This means you don't have to worry about dry, itchy, or tender skin. You can resume most of your normal activities immediately after, and nobody will know you've just come from a cosmetic therapy appointment.

Each Person Is Unique

The number of treatments needed varies from patient to patient and depends on factors like your desired outcomes, the degree to which skin aging has occurred, and your skin's overall health. We recommend four to six sessions for most patients. Once your treatment plan is complete and you have achieved satisfactory results, later sessions may be necessary to maintain your results. Keep in mind skin aging doesn't stop; it's an ongoing process made worse by sun exposure, smoking, and environmental pollutants. You can extend the length of your results by applying daily sunscreen and kicking tobacco. And treatment with Aerolase can be repeated whenever your skin needs refreshing.

Caring for Skin Post-Treatment

As a general rule of thumb, you want to abide by the less is more policy when caring for skin after laser treatment. Your post-treatment skincare function should only soothe and restore treated areas. Otherwise, a complicated routine can irritate vulnerable tissues and compromise your results. For about 48 hours, it's important to avoid products with harsh ingredients like alpha hydroxy acids and Retin-A. Also skip the exfoliation; your skin doesn't need it during this time of healing. Use a gentle cleanser and rich moisturizer. Although we just said it, we're reminding you again to apply sunscreen even on days when the sky looks overcast. Even better, choose a product that also protects against blue light damage. Your skin will thank you.

Frequently Asked Questions

Many patients want to know if treatment is painful - we're happy to say it's not. Earlier, we discussed how this laser works, and it is the short pulses emitted that allow for a comfortable treatment. Keep in mind the overall design also keeps heat from escaping into nearby skin. Energy settings can be changed to accommodate all skin types, meaning treatment is safe for nearly everyone.

Are Lasers Safe?

Laser treatment might sound intimidating, but this technology is mostly about heat. This means that when handled by well-trained professionals (like members of our staff), lasers are very safe. Aerolase is attracted to water under your skin. It heats this liquid until your body identifies the increased temperature as an "injury." Fresh cells and collagen are then sent to the treated area. With just a little time, you can expect to see smooth and clear skin that enhances your natural beauty.

Why Is Collagen So Important?

Collagen provides structure to the skin and contributes to its overall strength and elasticity. It also supports cell turnover, a natural process that eliminates dead cells from your skin's surface and allows new ones to develop. Collagen levels diminish with age, starting around age 20. The body produces optimal quantities of this protein up to that point; thereafter, levels drop by 1% every year until the cells that make collagen, called fibroblasts, weaken and gradually disappear. With dwindling collagen, skin:
  • Becomes dry
  • Looks loose and saggy
  • Contains less fat
  • Loses structure
 

Regeneration Gives a Fresh Start

Cosmetic treatments like lasers give collagen a fresh start. They trigger fibroblasts and likewise stimulate new collagen production. This means subtle but significant changes to your appearance like:
  • Smaller pores
  • Plumper contours
  • Tighter and firmer skin
  • Improvement of fine lines and wrinkles
As an added benefit, collagen production doesn't increase one day and then immediately drop the next. Your results will therefore be long-lasting. And the more collagen your skin has, the healthier and more youthful your appearance becomes.

Do Other Treatments Compare to This One?

Other lasers certainly exist, but they take longer and cause greater discomfort to achieve similar results. But even with these factors in place, no treatment compares to Aerolase. Results develop quickly, often in as little as a single treatment. Equally important, this laser is safe, effective, and tolerable for all ages, all skin types, and all varieties of acne. In the past, patients of color had few treatment options for refreshing their appearance. This laser changes that, providing a therapy proven to work without the risk of hyperpigmentation.

A Fierce (but Gentle) Weapon to Combat Skin Concerns

A variety of lasers exist to rejuvenate your skin, but most target any darkness in the skin. A lack of targeted treatment means less dramatic results and preclusion of patients of color. But this laser is safe for most patients, rejuvenating skin in a way that is nothing short of remarkable. Schedule your consultation today by contacting Chevy Chase Facial Plastic Surgery in Bethesda, MD.