Lasers comprise probably the most effective and the most popular tattoo removing technique. It has considerably reduced the pain and discomfort associated with traditional tattoo removing techniques, such as Microdermabrasion, Salabrasion, Cryosurgery and Excision. Tattoo removing is a simple, outpatient procedure with minimal downtime. However, proper aftercare following a laser tattoo removal session is necessary if you want to get maximum results from the procedure without any unwanted side effects, such as infection in the treated area, permanent scarring or skin tone and texture changes.
Most patients end up developing blisters or crusts within 12 to 72 hours after the procedure. Remember this is extremely normal and you don’t need to panic. Immediately after the procedure, the treated area will become white and this whitening will last for several minutes. It is followed by development of crust or scab, which may last for a couple of weeks. After the scab removes, the newly revealed skin will be pink or pale, and it will take several days for the skin to regain its normal color. Proper care is important to go through all these post-procedure transitional phases without developing any unwanted side effects.
It is your doctor’s job to brief you about the post-procedure care to ensure an uneventful recovery, but you cannot leave it entirely on your doctor. The best way to recover quickly and safely from any procedure is to educate yourself about the procedure. Here are some aftercare tips that maybe helpful for potential laser tattoo removal candidates:
Cleanliness is the key:
Keep the treated area as well as surrounding skin clean and dry while you are recovering from the treatment. Clean the treated area gently with soap and lukewarm water at least twice a day and then pat it dry. Avoid rubbing and scrubbing the treated area, this may lead to irritation.
Use the medications meticulously:
Your physician will prescribe you medications that you need to use after the procedure. These medications are mostly ointments for external use, such as topical antibiotics, pain relievers etc. apply a thin layer of the antibiotic ointment, such as Neosporin, thrice a day for three days or as directed by your doctor. You should also keep the treated area covered with a sterile bandage for the first three days.
Apply cool compressors if necessary:
You may also apply cool compressors to the treated area for the first 24 hours to help reduce itching and discomfort. If you feel pain and discomfort is unbearable, you can also take some painkiller, but avoid aspirin and aspirin containing medications. It would be better to discuss with your physician before taking any medicine that has not been prescribed by the doctor.
Never pick at the scab:
Do not pick at the scab or crust as scrapping the treated skin can cause infection and you may end up scarring your skin permanently.
Avoid shaving the treated areas:
Shaving the treated areas can have the similar effects as of scrubbing and scratching. So avoid shaving the treated areas until the wound has completely healed.
Use these aftercare tips to ensure a quick and smooth recovery after a laser tattoo removal session. It is pertinent to mention here that tattoo removing is not a onetime procedure; you may need multiple sessions to completely eliminate an unwanted tattoo.