Plucking, shaving, and waxing unwanted hair is painful and time-consuming. Laser hair removal can put an end to those dreaded tasks. Dr. Eleanor Y. Ford of Dermatology and Skin Cancer Center, located in Silver Spring, Maryland, uses the most advanced laser technology to safely and permanently reduce unwanted hair growth on almost any part of the body. The best candidates are those with fair skin and dark hairs, however, people of color can be treated as well. It is not as helpful for grey or white hairs. Call or book an appointment online to see Dr. Ford about your long-term grooming needs.
Laser hair removal targets and disables hair follicles, preventing further growth. The treatments harness a concentrated beam of light energy, which is focused on targeting individual hair follicles. This innovative treatment offers precise and more powerful results than other hair removal techniques. Laser hair removal is quick and effective, with most experiencing long-term hair removal and permanent hair reduction. While the effects are noticeable after just one treatment, most patients need a series of treatments to enjoy the full effects.
Laser hair removal can be performed anywhere from your underarms to your feet, including large areas like your back or your full legs. Laser hair treatment is the only FDA-approved treatment for “permanent" hair reduction, meaning that it's possible to experience some regrowth. Regrowth is more common when there's a hormone change, as is the case when pregnancy or menopause occurs.
During treatment, you'll relax on a treatment table with the target area exposed. You'll be asked to shave the day before treatment, but not on the day of, to ensure the best possible results. Before treatment, you may apply an ice pack or topical anesthetic, although most patients describe the sensation as mild.
You and Dr. Ford will wear special goggles to protect your eyes from the laser. When you’re ready, she'll use a handheld device to direct the laser at the skin and hair follicles. The laser sends intense heat into the follicles to damage them, preventing future growth. Treatment can take anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour, depending on the size of the area being treated.
After treatment is complete, a cold compress will be used to regulate the surface temperature of your skin. Your skin may be pink for a day or so after treatment, but most patients don’t experience any discomfort. It's also critical to avoid exposing your treated skin to the sun as the extra presence of melanin can reduce the effectiveness of the laser treatments or may cause discoloration.