What You Need To Know About CO2 Laser Treatment
There are a plethora of laser devices all designed to help treat specific concerns or generally enhance the appearance of the face, so how do you know which is the best for your unique goals? The quick answer is to ask board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Rachel Ness, in a consultation, but it also helps to know a little about different procedures before coming into our office. Here’s what you should know about our SmartSkin CO2 laser.
The SmartSkin laser is a fractional treatment, which differs from ablative lasers that aim to remove layers of skin to a predetermined depth to treat various concerns. Instead, fractional lasers create tiny microchannels—little wounds that stimulate the skin’s healing response—in the skin, which reduces downtime and discomfort after treatment. This is similar to how microneedling benefits the skin, although this laser creates much smaller wounds and more of them, which can help with an even result.
The benefit of many non-invasive skincare treatments is that they address a wide range of concerns. The CO2 laser is well-suited for people who are seeking treatment for:
- Moderate to profound wrinkles
- Dull, dry skin tone
- Uneven skin tone
- Rough or bumpy texture
- Large pores
- Skin laxity
- Acne or surgical scarring
- Brown spots or hyperpigmentation
During a consultation prior to treatment, Dr. Ness will evaluate your skin and listen to your unique concerns before recommending CO2 laser treatment or another procedure. Not everyone will benefit the most from CO2 laser, but nearly anyone with good skin health, no active infections, and mild to moderate concerns can be eligible for the procedure. The best candidates have realistic goals from non-surgical facial rejuvenation and are able to follow all of Dr. Ness’s instructions for aftercare.
During a CO2 laser treatment session, you will first receive a topical numbing cream to anesthetize the skin to ensure comfort. The SmartSkin device will then be passed over either the whole face or a specific treatment area and the laser will deliver its energy while simultaneously cooling the skin to ensure comfort.
The process takes about 30 minutes on average, depending on the size of the treatment area, and leaves patients’ skin feeling warm and tender, similar to how a sunburn feels. This sensation typically lasts about a week, and a few days after the treatment, you may notice flaking and peeling skin. This is normal and is part of the process for skin resurfacing, as new skin cells are being revealed.
This is our most powerful laser, so while it can create dramatic results, it also has these side effects.
Once your skin is back to normal after peeling and redness subsides, that doesn’t mean the treatment has stopped working. Neocollagenesis, or new collagen creation, happens slowly over the course of the coming weeks and months. This means you’ll continue seeing improvements in your appearance after CO2 SmartSkin treatments.
To help maintain your ultimate results, as well as to help your skin heal quickly with high-quality ingredients, consider adding some of our medical-grade skincare products to your routine. Dr. Ness has access to physician-only sunscreens, cleansers, moisturizers, and serums that you won’t find in stores. Check out our online store or ask us which products would be best for you.
When you think of facial treatments, think Fargo Center for Dermatology. Our board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Rachel Ness, is here to help you with any concern you have, medical or aesthetic. Offering the latest in laser technology and the best dermatology services, we’re ready and able to help you get the beautiful, radiant skin you’ve wanted. Learn more by scheduling a consultation online or calling our Fargo office location today.