Skin begins to age on a molecular level in our teenage years. With time, these molecular changes begin to appear on the surface of the skin. Fine wrinkles appear, the skin becomes less supple and elastic, sun spots appear, and the skin develops a weathered appearance. Repairing the effects of skin aging is an important strategy in the overall goal for facial rejuvenation.
Skin resurfacing reverses the signs of aging by removing damaged portions of the skin, and stimulating the growth of new collagen. It is performed to correct facial wrinkles, sun damaged skin, acne scarring, freshen the skin's appearance, and improve abnormal skin coloration (pigmentation).
There are several methods of performing skin resurfacing. They vary based upon the method in which damaged skin is removed, and the mechanism in which new skin/collagen growth is stimulated. The three categories of skin resurfacing include: 1) Chemical Peels 2) Laser Peels 3) Dermabrasion (physical peels) The type of peel chosen depends on your skin type, the skin's condition, your goals, and the problem being corrected. After a thorough consultation, Dr. Steiger will recommend the peel or peel program that is best for you.
Goals To improve the appearance of the skin. Skin resurfacing can eliminate wrinkles, improve skin color, improve skin texture, remove sun spots, and improve the appearance of scars.
The Procedure Skin resurfacing is perfomred using lasers, chemicals, and/or dermabrasion. Sometimes these methods are combined to achieve the best possible outcome. A detailed consulation will help determine the best method for you. Specific units of the face or the entire face/neck may be treated. Skin resurfacing is often performed in conjunction with other procedures such as blepharoplasty or fat micrografting (transfer).
Anesthesia Most peels can be performed under local anesthesia in the office. They are also performed at the same time as a surgical procedure to enhance the results.
Length of Time The procedure averages between 15 minutes to one hour, depending on the type of skin resurfacing, and area(s) being treated. Skin resurfacing can be performed in the comfort of our office procedure room, or in our fully accredited outpatient center, Other procedures, such as a facelift, brow-lift, blepharoplasty, and facial fat transfer may be combined with skin resurfacing and may be recommended after a detailed consultation with Dr. Steiger.
After the Procedure Most patients go home comfortably after the procedure. You will be given detailed post skin resurfacing instructions. Folowing these instructions will help achieve the best possible result.
Recovery Recovery varies according to the type of peel. The type of peel will determine how deep the skin is resurfaced and hence the recovery time. Superficial peels are nicknamed "lunch time peels" because patients often return to works immediately following the procedure. There is no down time. With medium depth and deep peels the recovery ranges between 5 to 10 days. At that time the skin has healed and make-up can be used to cover up any signs of pinkness or redness. During your consutlation, Dr. Steiger will outline the recovery process with you and show you photos of the various stages.
Chemical Peels are performed to rejuvenate and repair the skin. There are different types of chemical peels , each with its own biochemical advantages. After a thorough consultation, Dr. Steiger will suggest the proper peel for you.
Dermabrasion is a mechanical form of skin resurfacing. Dermabrasion is performed to improve the appearance of fine line and wrinkles associated with aging. Dermabrasion is also helpful in treating scarring such as acne scars, surgical scars, and traumatic scars (from injury).
Laser Peels utilize laser energy to resurface the skin. There are many different types of lasers available today. Some of which are very effective for skin rejuvenation. Dr. Steiger will help you determine which type of laser will work best for you.