Dermabrasion is one of the more invasive skin treatments, but it also gives great results in treating severe skin imperfections. Here’s all the info on the treatment.
Dermabrasion is one of the older skin treatments that has stood the test of time. It’s been around since the 90s and it is still one of the most effective methods of treating severe skin imperfections, primarily deeper scarring, but also discolorations, signs of aging, prominent blood vessels, etc.
As the name suggests, it implies doing controlled, intentional abrasion, AKA scraping, of the skin, to allow it to regenerate into new, healthy skin. Out with the old, in with the new!
However, dermabrasion is not as non-invasive as many of the popular skin treatments widely available in salons. It’s a relatively invasive method you should research thoroughly before considering it.
Here’s all the information on the treatment: how it’s done, who it’s for, healing, aftercare, and much more.
Dermabrasion is a treatment for eliminating facial skin imperfections like:
It’s a surgical form of dermaplaning and it involves the removal of problematic tissue through deep, intense exfoliation. Essentially, the epidermis and a very thin layer of the dermis (the surface and the middle layer of the skin) are removed by peeling. This allows for new skin without imperfections to grow over the area.
This is a serious treatment, as it affects the layers of the skin underneath the epidermis, so living tissue. It is done exclusively by dermatologists and plastic surgeons, so medical professionals, at clinics.
It’s often done in combination with other treatments. It can be done on smaller or larger areas. While it’s most often performed on the face, it can be done on the body, too.
The basic dermabrasion facial has spawned less intense treatments which engage the same principle of exfoliation, but only at the surface level:
These spin-offs only affect the epidermis, the outermost layer of the skin which consists of dead skin cells. They’re much less invasive and don’t entail any downtime, so they can be performed by estheticians.
The original dermabrasion treatment is only used for severe skin issues where less aggressive treatments won’t give the desired effects, while the spin-offs can be done to treat minor imperfections or just improve the overall appearance of the skin.
Image source: YouTube Screenshots Dr Anzarut Plastic Surgery
Dermabrasion is a serious treatment. Since it’s one of the more invasive treatments, it’s not something you can decide to get on your own. It’s only done for severe cases where less invasive treatments won’t really make a difference.
The decision of whether someone is a good candidate for the treatment or not is down to the dermatologist. So if you feel like you’re dealing with a skin issue you feel is severe, you should consult a dermatologist and let them assess the situation.
You are not a candidate for dermabrasion if:
For darker skin tones, dermabrasion carries the risk of leaving lighter patches, so your dermatologist may point you towards different skin resurfacing treatments.
Dermabrasion is not used to improve or eliminate moles, burn scars, or birthmarks.
The first step in the preparation for the dermabrasion facial are consults and assessment.
You can’t just walk into a clinic and book a dermabrasion. Extensive physical examination of the affected area has to be done to determine if dermabrasion is the right treatment for you and to set up a treatment plan. The doctor also needs to go over your medical history to see if there are any contraindications.
In terms of what you need to do to prepare for the treatment, it’s nothing complex:
Make transportation arrangements for your appointment. The treatment requires the administration of anesthesia, so you’ll probably be drowsy and won’t be able to drive yourself home.
As a controlled injury is afflicted on the skin, and it can be quite a deep one, dermabrasion entails a downtime period. The skin needs time to close up the injury and it can feel tender and tight – a lot like a sunburn. The area will be swollen for a couple of days.
The area first has to be covered with a protective dressing for a few days because it’s very susceptible to infection. When new skin forms, the injury is considered healed, but it will take some time for the new skin to blend into its surroundings – up to 8 weeks.
But the initial healing should be over within 2 weeks. You can go back to your normal activities after about 7 days, with some precautions.
Image source: Instagram @dermavision_maastricht
After the treatment, you will have to be very careful around the treated area to allow it to heal properly and without complications.
This is just a general outline – your aftercare routine will be prescribed by your doctor. Make sure to follow it as closely as possible to prevent any complications.
It will take several weeks for your skin to recover completely from the treatment – up to 3 months.
Your skin will close up after 7-14 days and new skin will emerge. However, it will be pink and stand out from its surroundings. It will blend back in within 4-12 weeks.
Only then will you see the final result. Bear in mind that you may need to repeat the procedure if your condition was very severe. Generally, a 50% improvement compared to the initial state is considered a success.
This depends on the condition you’re treating.
Dermabrasion for scars or tattoos is permanent. Other conditions, such as hyperpigmentation caused by external factors, may return. The skin’s aging process will continue after the treatment, so at some point, the signs of aging will return.
Image source: YouTube Screenshot Garcia Facial Plastic Surgery
Since it’s a somewhat invasive procedure, dermabrasion carries certain risks. They include:
Dermabrasion is an intense treatment that can only be performed by dermatologists and plastic surgeons. Don’t let anyone who’s not licensed to do dermabrasion perform the treatment.
Temporary side effects which are more or less expected are:
Dermabrasion for scars or other issues is exactly what its name suggests – surgical scraping of the skin to remove the tissue affected by a certain condition. It’s more invasive than many other skin treatments, so it’s only recommended for severe skin conditions like deep scarring. The treatment entails downtime and you can’t go straight back to your everyday routine. It can only be performed by dermatologists and plastic surgeons. It can also get quite pricey, but it can give a significant improvement.