Laser hair removal is done with a high-intensity laser light. The laser heats the follicles to a high temperature, which disrupts the hair pigment and causes it to break apart into many microscopic pieces. Once the pigment is broken up, those tiny pieces of pigment will move into the bloodstream and be harmlessly eliminated. After a laser hair removal treatment, follicles are permanently damaged and will thus be unable to produce new hair growth.
It depends on the situation, but for most people around 4 appointments are needed. The laser removes hair only when it is at its active growth phase, the anagen phase. The other phases of hair include the early anagen phase (the early growth,) the catagen phase (the start of regression,) and the telogen phase (the resting phase.) Since hair at the early anagen, catagen, and telogen phases is not removed, only about 1/4 of the hair is actually removed during a single laser hair removal session. Laser hair removal sessions are usually planned at about 4-week intervals.
During the first few days after the laser hair removal, it can be normal to have some mild redness and sensitivity. Aloe vera gel can be very helpful in cooling the skin and alleviating any discomfort. If skin is itchy, a hydrocortisone cream can help. After laser hair removal, it is important that patients use sunblock on the treatment area when they are exposed to the sun. Tanning beds should be avoided.
Laser hair removal is generally permanent, as long as the hair was eliminated during the anagen phase. While not common, factors like hormonal fluctuations can result in the growth of new hair. If this occurs, a touch-up hair removal session may be needed several years after the initial set of treatments.
Feel free to email us regarding any scheduling or general questions!