Microdermabrasion improves the appearance of aging and sun-damaged skin and can be performed on the face, neck, and arms.
How Microdermabrasion Works
Microdermabrasion is an outpatient procedure usually performed without anesthesia. Prior to the procedure, the doctor will provide patients with instructions about how to take care of your skin in the days preceding treatment such as avoidance of sun exposure and certain topical medications, like Retin A.
During microdermabrasion treatment, the doctor will press a device against your skin that propels a fine crystal spray. The fine crystals polish the skin and break up dead skin cells and other imperfections, revealing fresh, rejuvenated skin. The types of crystals used for this procedure include aluminum oxide crystals, diamond-tipped crystals, salt crystals, and sodium bicarbonate crystals.
Each microdermabrasion treatment takes 30 minutes to one hour. Microdermabrasion is gentle and does not cause discomfort, but patients may feel a mild warming or tingling sensation during the procedure.
What Conditions Does Microdermabrasion Treat?
Microdermabrasion is effective in treating the following conditions:
- Acne scarring
- Uneven skin color
- Clogged pores
- Large pores
- Age spots
- Sun spots
- Skin texture
- Fine lines
- Dull or dry patches
A patient’s face may look slightly pink after the treatment, but should resolve within a few hours. Makeup may be applied immediately following the procedure in order to cover up the pink areas.
Immediately post-treatment, individuals will likely notice an improvement in their skin’s color tone, and texture and skin will look fresh and rejuvenated.
In as little as 20 minutes, microdermabrasion can produce satisfying results, but multiple treatments may be necessary in order to achieve the best possible results. Microdermabrasion treatments are typically scheduled two to three weeks apart. During an initial consultation, your facial skin will be assessed to determine approximately the number of treatments likely required.
Are You a Candidate?
Microdermabrasion is most effective for patients who are in the early stages of aging. Teens can also benefit from microdermabrasion because it is effective in treating mild acne scarring. Both dark-skinned and light-skinned patients can benefit from microdermabrasion. If you have severe acne scars, sensitive skin disorders, and advanced aging signs, then microdermabrasion is not for you.
Microdermabrasion is a non-invasive procedure with minimal risks. Most of the side effects associated with microdermabrasion arise when the procedure is performed improperly or in unsterile conditions. For example, if the machine is used at too high of a strength, the fine crystals may perforate the patient’s skin. There is also a risk of the microdermabrasion crystals entering the eye and causing irritation if they are not applied properly. Negative side effects resulting from microdermabrasion are rare and typically do not occur when the procedure is performed by an experienced professional.