Treatments of Photodamage Using Chemical Peels
Aging skin is brought about by both hereditary and environmental factors. Environment, or specifically sun damage, plays one of the largest roles in the way the skin looks and functions. Sun damage (photodamage) is cumulative and begins during the early stages of childhood.
As we age our skin cells do not renew as rapidly as they did when we were younger. The outer layer of skin called the stratum corneum, becomes thicker in pigmentation or discolouration. There is an increase in lines or wrinkles and an overall dullness in the skin.
What is a chemical peel?
A chemical peel, also known as a glycolic acid peel, is a simple and controlled procedure which removes dead surface skin cells revealing the fresh, undamaged skin underneath. The glycolic acid also helps to promote collagen synthesis which in turn increases skin thickness, reducing the appearance of wrinkles. Peels are available in various concentrations ranging from 20% to 70% glycolic acid (derived from sugar cane). During this simple procedure, Dr. Sloan applies glycolic acid on cleansed skin for 2 to 5 minutes as required. It is then neutralized and followed by a post peel emollient.
What kind of improvements can I expect with a peel procedure?
Types of improvements that can be achieved with a chemical peel procedure include:
- Softening of fine lines
- Reduction in the appearance of wrinkles
- Increased smoothness of skin texture
- Mild or moderate leveling of acne scars
- Lightening of pigmentation irregularities (age spots / dark spots)
- Evened-out skin tone
- Improved skin moisture
Improved skin glow and radiance
- Minimization of pore size
What areas of the body can be treated with chemical peels?
- Top of hands
What is the timing for chemical peel procedures?
During the initial consultation, Dr. Sloan will determine the best treatment regime for your particular skin type. Most patients derive the most benefit from a series of 4 peels spaced 2 weeks apart during which the strength of the peel is gradually increased. Between peels we recommend the use of an 8% or a 15% AHA (alpha-hydroxy-acid) cream to maintain the benefits.
Are there any possible unpleasant reactions to a peel procedure?
After your peel, your face may redden slightly. Most patients are able to return to their daily activities immediately following a peel procedure. Some patients have experienced stinging, itching, mild burning, mild pain or discomfort, which subsides within a few days. The majority of patients have zero to minimal side effects making it one of the most popular procedures offered at the Niagara Dermatology Centre.