Laser Hair Removal Can Prevent Hair Growth in Common Trouble Areas

By Dr. William Cohen on March 01, 2016

A woman's smooth, hair-free legsBetween the mess of waxing and the hassle of shaving, removing unwanted hair can be a time consuming nuisance. With laser hair removal, you can enjoy long-lasting smooth skin without the constant maintenance of waxing, shaving, or tweezing. Laser hair removal benefits such common treatment areas as the legs, bikini area, and upper lip. Contact our Orange County, CA practice to schedule a consultation with Dr. William C. Cohen and find out if laser hair removal is right for you.

What Is Laser Hair Removal?

Laser hair removal is a simple, non-invasive procedure for the long-term removal of unwanted hair. During the laser hair removal procedure, a handheld laser is used to apply concentrated energy to each unwanted hair follicle, creating smooth, hairless skin.

The Laser Hair Removal Procedure

The laser hair removal procedure is quick and simple but may require multiple treatments, usually between four to six sessions, to achieve the full results. A few days before the laser hair removal procedure begins, the treatment area will need to be shaved as treatment is most effective on hair in the early stages of growth. Once it's time to start the procedure, a soothing anesthetic cream is generally used to ensure patient comfort and the power and frequency of the laser will be adjusted to the patient's needs and comfort level. The patient will also be given protective glasses to be worn during treatment to shield the eyes from the laser's light. During treatment, a handheld laser is applied to skin, sending concentrated light energy to each hair follicle. This light is then absorbed by the pigment within the hair, damaging the follicle just enough to prevent hair growth.

What to Expect after Treatment

Immediately after treatment, patients may notice some redness or swelling, which generally resolves within a few hours. The skin may also feel like it's mildly sunburned. An ice pack may be applied to the skin to help reduce any discomfort after treatment. Sun exposure and tanning beds should be avoided while the skin heals and sunscreen should be used whenever outside to protect the skin. Hair shedding may also occur in the first few days or weeks after treatment. Pigment changes within the skin may also occur, either causing the skin to become lighter or darker, but this is rare and usually temporary.

What Areas Can Be Treated with Laser Hair Removal?

Laser hair removal is suitable for any part of the body except around the eyes. Both men and women who suffer from unwanted hair can enjoy the long lasting effects of laser hair removal. Although laser hair removal can be performed on virtually any part of the body, the most common areas for women include the legs, arms, underarms, bikini area, chin, sideburns, and upper lip. The most common treatment areas for men include the chest, shoulders, and back.

Laser hair removal works best on coarse, thick hair. Patients with thinner hair may still obtain satisfying results, however, they may require more treatments. Additionally, because laser hair removal targets pigment within the hair, laser hair removal works best on patients with lighter skin and darker hair but patients with darker skin and lighter hair may still be suitable candidates.

Are You a Candidate for Laser Hair Removal?

For more information about laser hair removal, we invite you to schedule a consultation with Dr. Cohen today.

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