Aging, sun exposure, heredity and lifestyle factors including nutrition, alcohol consumption and smoking all may contribute to facial wrinkling.
Pigmentary changes of the skin, such as blotchiness or brown spots, may also occur with age or as a result of birth control pills, pregnancy or genetic factors. Prior acne may have made the surface of your skin uneven. These problems, as well as certain other skin conditions, may be improved by laser skin resurfacing.
Am I a good candidate for skin resurfacing?
You may be a good candidate for skin resurfacing if you have one or more of the following conditions:
Patients may have their skin resurfaced at almost any age. You may have certain characteristics that make you a better candidate for one technique rather than another, or your surgeon may have a preference based on his or her personal experience with the different methods.
The amount of time you can allow for recovery also may be an important factor in selecting a particular resurfacing method or determining the extent of treatment. All skin resurfacing techniques can be performed to varying depths.
A more superficial treatment will require less healing time, but you may need to have the procedure repeated more than once to achieve the same results as a deeper treatment. If you are having aesthetic (cosmetic) surgery, such as a facelift or eyelid surgery, you may be able to have a skin resurfacing procedure performed at the same time.
Your Laser Skin Resurfacing Personal Consultation
During the consultation, you may be asked to look in a mirror and point out the specific areas of your face that you would like to see improved. This will help your surgeon to understand your expectations and determine whether they realistically can be achieved.
How will my plastic surgeon evaluate me for skin resurfacing?
Your plastic surgeon will carefully examine your skin to determine which resurfacing technique, or combination of treatments, will provide you with the best results. Your skin type, the severity of any sun damage, the extent of uneven pigmentation and the depth of skin imperfections will be evaluated. Fine lines, coarse wrinkling or deep acne scarring each may require a different approach to treatment. You should come to the consultation prepared to discuss your medical history. This will include information about any medical conditions, drug allergies, medical treatments you have received, previous surgeries, and medications that you currently take. Be sure to tell your plastic surgeon if you have ever had x-ray treatments of your facial skin such as those used in the treatment of acne or if you have had a prior chemical peeling procedure. Current or past use of Accutane, as well as Retin-A and other topical skin preparations, must be reported to your surgeon. For your safety, it is important that you provide complete information.
Will my insurance help cover the cost of skin resurfacing?
Skin resurfacing procedures usually are not covered by insurance. Occasionally, however, if the resurfacing is being performed to treat precancerous skin conditions or improve certain types of scars, insurance coverage may be available. Your plastic surgeon or a member of the staff will explain how you can find out from your insurance company if a particular procedure will be covered.
When I first published The 7 Critical Questions to Ask Before Letting Any Surgeon Touch You, I had no idea that it would be so popularly received. Since its publication, this brief guide has helped thousands like you to more safely navigate the world of cosmetic surgery. The 7 Questions have been updated and a bonus section, Applying the 7 Questions, has just been added. Be my guest to read, learn and share.