What is iPulse (Intense Pulse Light)
Intense pulsed light (IPL) or flash lamp therapy is a non-invasive and non-ablative treatment that uses high-intensity pulses of visible light to improve the appearance of the following skin problems:
- Rosy cheeks
- Age marks
- Facial lines
The procedure of rejuvenating aged skin is referred to as photo rejuvenation and requires a series of IPL treatments. IPL may also be helpful for mild to moderate acne and stretch marks.
How Does iPulse Laser Work?
IPL systems work on the same principles as lasers in that light energy is absorbed into particular target cells with color (chromospheres) in the skin. The light energy is converted to heat energy, which causes damage to the specific target area. IPL systems are different from lasers in that they deliver many wavelengths (or colors) in each pulse of light instead of just one wavelength.
Most IPL systems use filters to refine the energy output for the treatment of specific areas. This enhances penetration without using excessive energy levels and enables targeting of particular chromospheres (these are skin components that absorb light).
IPL therapy is considered a non-ablative resurfacing technique, which means that it targets the lower layers of skin (dermis) without affecting the top layers of skin (epidermis). The results are not as dramatic as ablative resurfacing, where both the dermis and epidermis are injured to produce a much more noticeable overall outcome. The advantage of IPL therapy is its minimal downtime — a patient can often have the procedure done during their lunch break and return to work immediately afterward.
After Care for IPL (Intense Pulse Light)
One of the great things about an IPL photo facial is the ack of downtime associated with the treatment. However, there are a few photo facial aftercare recommendations that can ensure optimal results.
Immediately following the photorejuvenation session, the treated areas will be pinkish red with slight swelling. The reddish coloring will dissipate within 24 hours typically. After the treatment, you may notice that sunspots and discoloration appear darker and more prominent. This is normal and a good sign that the treatment is working.
Over the next few days, brown spots and other blemishes will begin to surface on the skin. The places may raise and appear as small scabs on the skin. These will naturally flake off over the following days.
If you notice blisters or burns on the skin, contact your clinic immediately. This is not normal and should be addressed promptly, so scarring does not take place on the new surface. Be sure that whichever provider you use to administer your treatment is specially trained for his procedure!
What To Do After A Photofacial Treatment
- Be sure to maintain moisture on the skin at all times. Apply a gentle moisturizer immediately following the treatment.
- Use a gentle cleanser with warm water, twice a day.
- Be consistent with sunscreen application. This may be the most important aspect of aftercare treatment. Use a sunscreen with at least a 30 SPF that protects against UVA (Longwave ultraviolet A) and UVB (Short wave ultraviolet B) rays.
What Not To Do After A Photofacial Treatment
- Avoid unprotected sun exposure for at least 30 days after your IPL photorejuvenation session. The skin is especially sensitive as it heals and re-damaging the skin is possible during this time.
- If possible, do not apply to make up immediately after the treatment. IT is best to give the skin 12 hours of rest before putting a product on the surface.
- Do not take a hot bath, hot shower, or bask in the hot tub for at least 48 hours. Warm showers are excellent, but you do not want the skin to overheat while it recovers from the heat and light waves from the IPl Treatment.
- Avoid strenuous activity or exercise for 48 hours after the facial photo session. Overheating the skin can hamper the positive effects of the treatment.
- Do not scratch or pick the skin during recovery. As blemishes surface, leave them be! They will flake off naturally. You do not want to create a scar where a brown spot once lived.
- Avoid any product or supplement high in vitamin A, such as retinoic acid, glycolic acid, tretinoin (Retin-A), accutane, and alpha-hydroxy acids.
Possible Risk and Complications
Most of the risk and complications of IPL are minor and are expected, and These include redness of the skin, which may go on for a few days after treatment, discomfort, and mild to moderate burning sensation which can be reduced by applying enough gel or topical anesthetic.
BEFORE and AFTER PROCEDURE
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