Lasers, Light & Skin Care
Comprehensive facial rejuvenation must include restoration and maintenance of facial skin. Too frequently patients underestimate skin health as a primary source for a vibrant, youthful appearance. Changes in skin complexion, increasing skin laxity, and the appearance of wrinkles are some of the most obvious signs of facial aging. While we cannot control the skin type we inherit from our parents, nor can we slow the sands of time, we do have control over many of the other factors that negatively impact our skin health.
How does our skin age?
Ultraviolet light from the sun is arguably the single greatest factor negatively impacting our skin. Over time, ultraviolet light induces changes in skin cells that predispose them to morph into skin cancers. In addition, the more fair-skinned the patient, the greater the likelihood of developing pigmented spots and blotches in the skin. Sun exposure is also responsible for alterations in the connective tissue within and below our skin. UV light destroys collagen and elastin fibers leading to decreased skin elasticity, increased skin laxity, and decreased skin strength. Thinning skin permits small blood vessels to become more visible along with the increased pigmentation. Without adequate protection from UV-light, especially in South and Central Texas, our skin complexion will not only become more mottled with time, but also increasingly more susceptible to skin cancer.
Other factors impact skin aging as well. Inadequate water intake leaves skin dehydrated and further detracts from supple skin buoyancy. And an unhealthy diet can starve our skin of the nutrients needed to maintain its strength and integrity. Finally, exposure to nicotine and tobacco smoke, diabetes, and elevated cholesterol all negatively impact blood flow in small blood vessels that feed the skin, further starving the skin of oxygen and nutrients and adversely effecting wound healing. These factors are additive to the natural decrease in subcutaneous fat tissue below the skin surface, and loss of bone volume with time. Collectively, these factors accentuate our aged appearance.
What is light and laser skin therapy?
A number of non-invasive and minimally invasive light and laser therapies exist to help with facial skin rejuvenation. Technologies like SCITON® BBL™(broadband light) utilize specific wavelengths of light to target pigmented areas in sun-damaged skin. Areas of increased pigmentation and vascularity preferentially absorb the light energy, leading to their initial darkening followed by elimination as the skin exfoliates. Pore size and bacteria in the skin are also reduced, helping improve skin texture and reduce acne. Experience and evidence demonstrate results to be smoother, healthier appearing skin with no wounding or downtime.
Additional modalities like SCITON® erbium:YAG full-field resurfacing and ProFractional™ laser therapies can be utilized for more comprehensive facial skin rejuvenation. Depending on the depth and distribution of laser energy delivered, the skin can be resurfaced to eliminate contour irregularities like fine lines and wrinkles. This is ideal for elimination of the fine vertical lines around the mouth. At the same time, pigmentation can be decreased along with tightening of the underlying skin support structures. Choosing the treatment right for you will depend on your specific goals, your skin complexion, and the amount of downtime for healing that can be tolerated. Dr. Stallworth and the staff of Stadia Med Spa can help devise a treatment strategy that is right for you, and help repair and restore your facial skin.