Chemical peels are helpful for wrinkles, light acne scarring and irregular pigmentation such as freckles and age spots. Pre-cancerous conditions such as keratoses (thick, rough, reddish growths) also respond well to this procedure.
There are several types of chemical peels:
- Light peels to remove superficial wrinkles
- Medium peels
- Deep peels for more severe conditions
How Are Chemical Peels Performed?
After thoroughly cleansing the skin with an agent that removes excess oils, the eyes and hair are protected. One or more chemical solutions — an alpha hydroxy acid, such as glycol acid, salicylic acid, or lactic acid; trichloroacetic acid (TCA); or carbolic acid (phenol) are applied with a small applicator to an area of the face. Excess solution is removed and the procedure is repeated on other areas. These applications produce a controlled wound, enabling new, refreshed skin to appear. Most patients experience a warm to somewhat burning sensation that lasts from 5-10 minutes, followed by a tingling sensation.
Post Treatment Care
Depending upon the type of peel, a reaction similar to a sunburn occurs following a chemical peel. Superficial peeling usually involves redness, followed by scaling the ends in 3-7 days. Medium-depth and deep peeling may result in swelling and formation of water blisters that crust and peel off over a period of 7-10 days. It is Important to avoid overexposure to the sun after a chemical peel since the new skin is fragile and more susceptible to sun burning.
The amount of improvement varies and depends upon the initial condition of the patient’s skin. Significant improvement of damaged skin can been achieved, which can produce dramatic results.
A skin rejuvenation program is often used in conjunction with either chemical peels or laser wrinkle removal to reduce the fine wrinkles of the face, lighten areas of hyperpigmentation and produce a softer texture to the skin. The program can be accomplished separately or in conjunction with the other procedures listed here and is followed at home by the patient after a consultation and a treatment plan is established for the patient’s cosmetic needs. Our skin care department is dedicated to providing you with the latest and most effective skin treatments available.
We invite you to inquire about laser skin resurfacing and hope it can help you achieve smoother, fresher, younger-looking skin.