Chemical Skin Peel Procedure

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Pestering dark spots and skin discoloration can make your skin tone look uneven. Factors like sun exposure and acnes can cause pigmentation in the skin, and even lead to burns, tanning, rashes which often leaves marks behind. These marks are difficult to treat with home remedies and therefore require medical treatments under the supervision of a physician or a dermatologist.

A chemical peel is a popular treatment which is used to treat acne scars, marks, pigmentation or any sort of discoloration. It is a skin-resurfacing procedure in which a chemical solution is applied to the skin in order to remove the top most layers of the skin. The chemical used in this treatment is hydroxy acid which is tested, measured and verified before applying on the skin making it a safe and reliable treatment. The fresh skin that grows back after a chemical peel treatment is smoother and younger looking.

Skin treatments such as chemical peel treatments help get an even skin tone and rejuvenate the skin. It reduces acne marks, removes dark spots and gives a smooth, spotless skin without any pigmentation. Chemical peels are also used to treat mild wrinkles and fine lines which appear due to stress, excessive exfoliation, improper skin care or due to natural aging.

A chemical peel treatment can be combined with other cosmetic procedures to get a complete anti-aging treatment that lasts long. Chemical skin peels are suitable for treating face, neck, hands and other parts of the body as well. It is an effective and safe treatment that gives potent results within a short span of time.

Chemical peels can be done at different levels/ depths – light, medium or deep – depending on your skin type and desired results. Each type of chemical peel treatment uses a different chemical solution. While deeper chemical peels are more effective with dramatic results, they take a longer recovery time as compared to light or medium chemical peels with lesser results.

 

Types Of Chemical Peels

Chemical peels are broadly defined by the depth of the effect that they produce on the skin. Depending on the degree of the issues that one is addressing, a proper depth of chemical peel treatment is selected. There are usually 3 depths of a chemical peel treatment-

Light Chemical Peel: A light, subtle chemical peel removes the top most layer of the skin which is known as the epidermis layer. It can be used to treat wrinkles, fine lines, acne scars, uneven skin tone, pigmentation or any dryness. You can have a light chemical peel as often as every two to five weeks depending on your skin condition and desired results.

Medium Chemical Peel: A medium chemical peel treatment is slightly intensive as compared to the light chemical peel which affects only the epidermis layer of the skin. Rather than just removing the topmost layer of the skin, a medium chemical peel also removes portions from the middle layer of the skin which is known as dermis. A medium chemical peel treatment can help reduce wrinkles, acne scars and uneven tone in a much effective and deeper level than a light chemical peel. For constant results, you can repeat a medium chemical peel after three to nine months.

Deep Chemical Peel: A deep chemical peel treatment is used to remove skin cells from the epidermis layer and from portions of the mid to the lower layer of your dermis. A dermatologist might recommend you a deep chemical peel if you suffer from heavy acne scars, damaged tissues, deep lines and wrinkles. A deep chemical peel can be performed only once, given its high effectiveness and potency.

 

What Happens During the Procedure?

A chemical peel treatment is a simple procedure wherein a chemical solution is applied on the area to be treated in a controlled and effective manner. Your doctor will first clean your face to remove any dust particles or bacteria that might be present on your face. Then they will use a brush, cotton ball or gauze to apply the chemical solution which typically contains glycolic acid or salicylic acid.

The treated skin will begin to brighten as the topmost layer will be removed by the applied chemical solution. You might feel a tingling sensation during or post the treatment which is quite normal. Your doctor will finally apply a neutralizing solution or wash to remove the chemical solution from the treated skin.

In medium chemical peels, your doctor will apply cool compresses to soothe the treated skin as the chemical solution acts slightly more than the normal light chemical peel solution. It will affect your upper and middle layer of the skin and thus help treat deeper scar tissues, discoloration and fine lines.

The most complex of all chemical peel treatments is the deep chemical peel in which intravenous fluids (IV) are given to the patient and the heart rate is closely monitored. The doctor will apply carbolic acid (phenol) using a cotton-tipped applicator and the skin will begin to turn grey white. In order to control your skin exposure to phenol, your doctor will do the procedure in portions at about 15-minute intervals. A full-facial deep chemical peel treatment might take up to 90 minutes.

Are you a good candidate for chemical peeling?

Review your medical history: Consult a physician or a medical examiner before going for a chemical peel treatment for a thorough skin evaluation and check up. Be prepared to answer all questions about your current and previous medications, any specific medical condition especially related to the heart, liver or kidney. These might not be relevant to light or medium chemical peels, but must be considered when opting for a deep chemical peel treatment. Tell your doctor about any medication that you have taken or are currently taking which might affect your skin or make it sensitive to the sun. Don’t forget to mention about any previous cosmetic procedures that you might have taken in the past. Be sure to tell your doctor if you have been using a retinoid cream such as tretinoin (Renova, Retin-A, others) which tend to enhance the penetration of some chemical peels.

Go for a physical exam: Your dermatologist or medical examiner will evaluate your skin and the area to be treated. The test will reveal your skin type, its sensitivity, any specific condition that you might suffer from and will help the doctor understand whether a chemical peel is safe for you or not. It will also help the doctor determine the type of chemical peel you should go for. Factors like skin tone, thickness, damage, etc might affect results of a chemical peel which is why it is best to consult a doctor beforehand the procedure.

Desired Results: Be honest about your expectations from a chemical peel treatment with your doctor and tell them about your skin issues without hesitation. Ask them about the risks involved, if this is the right kind of treatment for you or if it will be able to generate the desired result or not. Make sure you understand how many treatments are required for your skin type, how long it will take to recover and what your final results might look like.