Tattoos have been around for thousands of years and, without a doubt, are the most famous form of body art. They have long been used for many things, including showing one’s philosophies, a way of telling one’s story, and, at times, to appreciate something or someone.
Getting tattoos is uncomfortable, but removing them is even more laborious if you go the surgical way. Traditional methods like excision, cryosurgery, and salabrasion can be painful and carry several risks. But do you really need to choose from these options to get rid of your tattoo? The short answer is no.
The latest and the most effective solution to get rid of tattoos is Laser tattoo removal, which doesn’t cause the pain of surgical methods but gets the job done well. In the remaining part of this article, we will explain what laser tattoo removal is, its side effects, and whether or not it is worth your time and money.
How Does a Laser Tattoo Removal Work?
The treatment uses a laser beam to target the tattoo pigment and break it into smaller bits. After that, the immune system comes into action to remove those fragmented bits. Laser wavelength specifications differ for every tattoo ink color.
Since the tattoo ink is a foreign object, the immune system keeps trying to remove it from day one. That is the reason why tattoos fade after a while. However, the tattoos, on the whole, are too big to remove for the immune system alone. A little help from the laser does the trick.
Is The Procedure Painful?
There is some discomfort involved in laser tattoo removal. Most people compare this pain to that caused by a snapping of a light rubber band against the skin. But your doctor can overcome even this pain with topical anesthetics applied before the treatment.
Will I Need to Repeat the Treatment?
Like most Laser treatments, the results need time and a series of treatments to show. You will need multiple sessions of this treatment to completely get rid of the tattoo. The exact number depends on several factors, and your treatment provider can best guide you on them.
Can the Tattoo be Completely Removed?
In a literal sense, laser tattoo removal doesn’t remove the tattoo; it reduces the pigment and may leave some imprint. This imprint may remain a bit more prominent in case of a bad tattoo job. Some other factors also determine the outcome of laser tattoo removal. Your dermatologist will look into those factors to tell you what to expect.
What is the Downtime?
For most people, there is no downtime after laser tattoo removal treatment, and they can carry on with their activities with little to no hindrance. The doctor may recommend certain routine matters to avoid for a couple of days, though. If you are getting the treatment for the first time, you may want to rest and take a couple of days off to allow your skin to heal completely.
What are the Side Effects?
The side effects of laser hair removal are usually mild and temporary. Swelling and redness in the treated area are the most common side effects. Some itching may also take place. In rare cases, temporary discoloration may also show up. The good thing is most of these issues subside in a few days after the treatment.
Additionally, this treatment can cause photosensitivity. In that case, be sure to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen. Moreover, avoid going out in the sun during peak hours, and when you do, apply the sunscreen and wear a large floppy hat to ensure your skin remains safe from harmful UV rays.
Body tattoos can quickly transform from something you desire to something you despise. But you do not need to go for invasive surgical methods to get rid of this body drawing. Not only does laser tattoo removal give you pigment-free skin, but it is also a minimally invasive procedure. Nevertheless, the success of this treatment depends heavily on your dermatologist’s expertise.