Microdermabrasion Procedure and Risks and Side Effects
Microdermabrasion is a non-invasive skin procedure that uses crystals or diamond-tipped wands to physically buff away the outer layer of dead cells. This helps to eliminate stretch marks, age spots, blemishes, and skin discoloration.
The procedure is not painful and most people feel only a slight tugging on the face, similar to a facial massage. Some people may experience minor abrasions or tiny pinpricks filled with blood after treatment.
What Is Microdermabrasion?
Microdermabrasion is a cosmetic procedure that uses a special wand-like device to buff away the top layer of dead skin cells, improving the tone and texture of your skin. It is also effective for treating fine lines, sun damage, clogged pores, and acne scars. Microdermabrasion can be a good choice for people with sensitive skin, since it does not involve the use of chemicals.
Your skin will look a little pink right after the treatment, but this should fade within a few hours. Most people can return to work and other activities immediately after the procedure.
A microdermabrasion session usually lasts thirty to forty-five minutes. During the procedure, your provider will guide the device over the area you want to treat, removing the damaged outer layer of your skin and vacuuming the debris away.
This treatment is typically painless, though some people find it uncomfortable or slightly irritating. A topical anesthetic can be used to decrease discomfort if needed. Before the microdermabrasion treatment, you should avoid using any products that irritate your skin, and make sure to wear sunscreen when going outdoors.
After the procedure, you may experience a few days of dryness or flaking, but these effects should disappear with time. You should avoid chlorinated swimming pool water and other chemical-based skincare treatments for two weeks after your treatment.
Having the right skin care routine is essential for healthy-looking skin, but even with the best regimen, many of us struggle with imperfections. Whether you are dealing with sun damage, wrinkles, pore blockages, or acne scarring, it is important to find the right treatment for your needs.
Microdermabrasion is a non-invasive, safe, and effective way to improve the appearance of your skin. Depending on the severity of your problems and your expectations, it may take several treatments before you notice significant improvement. Compared to other procedures, like chemical peels and laser resurfacing, microdermabrasion is relatively inexpensive and requires less downtime. It is also a great option for people who want to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles without surgery. However, it is not a treatment for deep wrinkles, surgical scars, or severe acne.
What Are the Risks and Side Effects of Microdermabrasion?
In general, microdermabrasion is considered a safe cosmetic treatment by most experts. However, there are a few things that should be kept in mind before undergoing the procedure.
For example, it's not recommended for people with active acne, rosacea or other inflammatory skin conditions, as the abrasiveness of the crystals used in the treatment can aggravate these problems. It's also not advised for those with a compromised skin barrier, like those with eczema or psoriasis. The crystals that are used in the treatment can also cause damage to the small blood vessels in the skin, so this isn't a good choice for people with poor circulation or with varicose veins or telangiectasias (commonly known as spider veins).
The side effects from microdermabrasion are usually mild and short-lived. Patients may experience a slight stinging or itchiness while the skin is being exfoliated. They may also have dry, flaking skin for a few days after the treatment. It's important to moisturize and use sunscreen afterward, as the treated skin will be more sensitive to sunlight.
Some patients can experience temporary redness and swelling after the treatment, which typically resolves within a day or two. In rare cases, dermabrasion can lead to a bacterial or fungal infection or scarring, particularly in people with darker skin.
It's also not a good idea to have a chemical peel or laser treatments on the same skin area right after a microdermabrasion session, as this can lead to overexposure and damage to the newly-resurfaced skin. Having multiple procedures done too close together can also lead to a loss of skin elasticity.
Most patients will need to have a series of treatments in order to see results from microdermabrasion. It's typically best to do these treatments once or twice a month for six to 16 weeks. Those with more severe skin issues may require a longer series of treatments or additional types of treatment. After a few treatments, most patients will notice smoother, more even-looking skin.
What Are the Benefits of Microdermabrasion?
Microdermabrasion can be used to improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, uneven skin tone and pigmentation, large pores, blackheads, light acne scars, or rough skin texture. The procedure is safe and non-invasive, making it a great option for people with sensitive skin. Microdermabrasion is also an effective treatment for reducing the appearance of age spots, freckles, and other sun damage.
The benefits of microdermabrasion are often immediate and can be extended by regular monthly treatments after the initial series of sessions is completed. Most patients need anywhere from five to 16 treatments to achieve the desired cosmetic results. A monthly follow-up appointment allows the doctor to check on your progress and make adjustments to the treatment plan if necessary.
If you are planning to undergo a microdermabrasion session, it is important to avoid using any exfoliative products or procedures at least seven days prior to your appointment. This includes products that contain retinol (tretinoin, adapalene, or tazarotene) and other physical scrubs. It is also important to let your doctor know if you have a history of cold sores or herpes simplex virus outbreaks as these conditions can increase the risk of an infection.
During the procedure, you will be seated in a reclining chair and the technician will use a handheld device with a diamond-tip hand piece that simultaneously sloughs away dead skin cells while suctioning them away. This is done over the entire face and can take about 30 to 40 minutes. After the treatment, a soothing moisturizer and sunscreen will be applied to your skin.
After a microdermabrasion treatment, your skin may feel a little red and swollen for a day or two. This is due to the skin being slightly irritated and the effects of the treatment will fade shortly. If the side effects persist, you can try applying a soothing cream to help reduce discomfort.
It is also important to note that the skin will be more sensitive to sunlight after a microdermabrasion treatment. This is why it is essential to wear a sunscreen that is at least 30 SPF or higher every time you go outdoors.
What Are the Side Effects of Microdermabrasion?
Because microdermabrasion only works on the surface of your skin, it has few side effects. The treatment typically takes 30 to 40 minutes, and you can go home afterward. Your skin may feel a little sensitive for a day or so afterward, but this usually goes away on its own. You may have some dry, flaking skin after a microdermabrasion session, which can be treated with a good moisturizer. You will also need to use a sunscreen and avoid sun exposure afterward, because your skin is more sensitive to the sun in the days and weeks after a microdermabrasion treatment.
You may also experience redness or pinkness, which is a result of your skin being slightly irritated during the microdermabrasion process. This typically fades within a few hours, but some people experience this for a longer period of time.
Before you have the treatment, your skin will be cleansed to remove any makeup and dirt from the surface of your face. If you are having crystal-based microdermabrasion, the technician will use a device with tiny crystals to buff the surface of your skin and remove dead cells. Diamond-tipped devices can also be used for this purpose, and they can work just as well as crystal-based ones.
After the exfoliation process is complete, the crystals and any loose skin will be suctioned off your face by the machine. Your skin might be a little pink, but this typically fades within 24 hours.
Depending on the type of machine used, you might be asked to wear protective eyewear. This is because the crystals can sometimes get into your eyes, and they could cause irritation or even an infection if this happens. You should also let your technician know if you have any medical conditions, including a history of skin cancer or the acne medicine isotretinoin.
Some people can get away with only one or two treatments, but most need a few monthly sessions to achieve their desired cosmetic results. You can also combine microdermabrasion with other procedures, such as a facial or chemical peel, for enhanced results.