Chemical peels remove damaged outer layers of skin to make skin smoother, reduce scarring and remove blemishes. Ranging from mild to strong, there are three types of chemical peels: alphahydroxy acid (AHA), trichloroacetic acid (TCA) and phenol. The strength of each peel is tailored to the patient. Peels can be combined with other procedures, such as facelifts, for additional improvement to skin. Chemical peels may be covered by insurance if they are performed for medical rather than cosmetic reasons.
Chemical peels are performed in a plastic surgeon's or dermatologist's office, or an outpatient surgical center. Anesthesia is not required because TCA and phenol have anesthetic properties, and AHA produces only a slight stinging.
During a TCA or phenol peel, the skin is cleansed and the solution is applied, which may cause a brief stinging sensation. Petroleum jelly or a waterproof adhesive tape may be put on the skin following a phenol peel. During an AHA peel, the skin is cleansed and the solution applied; there is no need for post-peel ointment or covering.
A phenol or TCA peel can result in tingling or throbbing, reddened skin, a crust or scab, and significant swelling that lasts, depending on the strength of the peel used, about a week. With a phenol peel, eyes may be swollen shut at first, and the patient may be put on a liquid diet and advised to keep talking to a minimum. Any tape used is removed after a day or two. AHA peels can cause temporary stinging, redness and irritation, as well as flaking or crusting. After a chemical peel, it is essential that the skin be protected from the sun.
The Obagi® Blue Peel® chemical peel helps to reverse the effects of aging, sun damage and other skin conditions. It improves skin's appearance by removing dead skin cells and promoting the growth of new ones. The Obagi Blue Peel chemical peel can be used by nearly anyone, regardless of skin color and type. A superficial-to-medium-depth peel, it is usually used on the face, but can be used on the neck, chest, hands, back, arms and legs. The Obagi Blue Peel chemical peel is used to treat:
- Fine lines
- Acne scars
- Large pores
The Obagi Blue Peel chemical peel uses trichloroacetic acid (TCA), combined with the patented Obagi Blue Base, to peel off damaged layers of skin. After the peel is applied, the patient experiences a slight burning sensation that lasts for a few minutes. Treatment time is usually less than an hour. Afterwards, treated skin has a bluish tint, which washes off within 24 hours.
Modern technology provides a variety of successful laser resurfacing treatments for improving the condition of the skin. Laser skin treatments employ focused beams of light energy to counteract the effects on the skin of acne, aging, sun damage, hyperpigmentation, scars, or poor nutrition. Resurfacing laser treatments are safe and efficient, requiring little downtime to provide effective results.
Much less invasive than dermabrasion and chemical peels, laser treatments remove damaged skin and rejuvenate the patient's appearance. Most of the time, such treatments are sought for the face, but may also be performed on other parts of the body.
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