What is Fraxel Laser?
The Fraxel Re:store laser system is considered one of the best available treatments for non-ablative fractional resurfacing of the face, neck, chest and hands. Although there are several different Fraxel procedures currently available to target different skin problems, Fraxel Re:store is the original and most popular one. Fraxel Laser resurfaces damaged skin to reveal younger, more refreshed skin, improving the appearance of wrinkles, scars and age spots through a simple procedure with minimal downtime.
The advanced Fraxel technology offers deeper dermal laser penetration (depths up to 1.6mm) than traditional treatments, and is delivered by laser pulses in fractional patterns. The laser vaporizes tiny columns of tissue on the skin’s surface, stimulating the body’s natural skin cell and collagen regenerative responses. Because of its miniscule size, the Fraxel laser does not damage surrounding healthy tissue, allowing for rapid healing to only the targeted area.
What does Fraxel Laser treat?
The Fraxel Re:store laser is FDA-approved to treat:
- Wrinkles around the eyes
- Age spots/Sunspots
- Actinic Keratoses
- Skin resurfacing
Fraxel Re:store Laser is a true nonsurgical alternative to more invasive surgical and resurfacing procedures, as it significantly reduces the risks and recovery time associated with facelifts and other resurfacing procedures. Fraxel can also be considered a potentially preventative treatment, as it often eliminates the need for a facelift.
Fraxel Laser Skin Resurfacing Procedure
During the Fraxel skin resurfacing procedure, the skin will first be cleaned, and then a topical anesthetic ointment will be applied to the treatment area, as well as an FDA-certified water soluble blue tint to highlight the contours of the skin and guide the Fraxel laser device over the treatment areas.
The laser device is moved over the targeted area in order to deliver precise, effective energy that destroys damaged skin cells and promotes the growth of new, healthy skin.
The entire procedure takes about 30 to 45 minutes to perform, and is done right in your doctor’s office. Most patients report feeling an increased sensation of heat during this procedure. Any discomfort is minimized by the topical anesthetic applied before the procedure begins.
Recovery from Fraxel Laser Treatment
After the Fraxel Re:store procedure, patients can return home right away, but may feel like their skin is sunburned for up to 24 hours. The skin may also appear pink or red during this time, which can be covered up with makeup if desired. Over the next week or two, the skin will then bronze and continue in this pattern as you undergo multiple treatment sessions. Patients will also experience flaking with the sunburn appearance as the old, damaged skin is exfoliated and new, fresh skin takes its place.
In addition to these common side effects, patients may also experience minor itching, dry skin, peeling and flaking. There is also a small risk of infection, hyperpigmentation or scarring. These risks can be greatly reduced by choosing an experienced doctor to perform your procedure.
Fraxel Laser Results
The results of the Fraxel laser treatment are visible immediately after the procedure. Patients may also experience mild swelling and redness, although these side effects usually go away on their own in a short time. The results of the procedure will continue to improve as side effects subside.
Most patients can achieve effective results from three to five Fraxel laser treatment sessions spaced two to four weeks apart. Patients can return to work very quickly after each of these sessions, usually within 24 hours.
The results of the Fraxel laser skin resurfacing procedure vary depending on each patient’s individual skin, but most report significant improvement to the overall quality of their skin, including:
- Reduced appearance of brown spots
- Reduced fine lines and wrinkles
- Improved appearance of acne and surgical scars
- Improved tone and texture
It is important for patients to take certain precautions after treatment to protect the skin and help it heal properly. Patients should avoid direct sun exposure for at least three months after Fraxel laser treatment, and should apply sunscreen of at least 30 SPF, as the new skin is highly sensitive.