If you haven’t yet heard of microneedling you definitely aren’t alone. The world of non-surgical facial procedures is constantly evolving and changing as experts find new and improved ways of addressing those aspects of our facial appearance that cause us concern. Microneedling is one of the latest developments and is a multi-purpose treatment that can target an array of different skin-related problems. As a result, patients can experience smoother, tighter skin and a more youthful appearance. In addition to use on the face, microneedling has also been shown to be successful on the neck, décolletage, and arms.
What does microneedling involve?
Microneedling is a minimally-invasive, non-surgical treatment that involves placing hundreds of tiny holes into the skin using a handheld device. There are several types of handheld device available, from rollers to wands. Each is applied over your face, neck, décolletage or arms in a methodical pattern to create these controlled puncture wounds. Although it is known as microneedling, those with a fear of needles needn’t worry. The needles used are between 0.5mm and 3mm long and ultra-fine, nothing like a conventional needle used to delivery injections.
Since the procedure does involve damaging the skin, patients are given a local anesthetic ahead of the procedure. This may be topical or injected and will ensure that you aren’t in any pain while the microneedling is taking place.
How does microneedling work?
You could be forgiven for thinking that damaging the skin couldn’t possibly improve its quality nor deal with any cosmetic issues. However, in causing these tiny wounds the microneedling actually prompts your body to heal itself. To do this is needs to ramp up the production of collagen and elastin, two of the key components of smooth, supple and youthful skin. As your skin heals, it will become firmer and plumper, smoothening out scars, lines and wrinkles and improving the texture of the skin.
There is another reason why microneedling can be beneficial. These tiny wounds in the skin also create better absorption of topical treatments, such as anti-ageing serums and creams. This could potentially improve the rate at which they start to work and their effects, combined with the increased levels of collagen and elastin to heal the skin, can boost the overall effect of the procedure.
How long does microneedling take and what can I expect after the procedure?
Most patients can undergo a microneedling procedure in under an hour, but it depends on exactly which areas are being targeted and how well your body takes to the process.
Immediately afterwards, the target area will look red and may be a little swollen, almost as though you have moderate sunburn. It will also feel tighter than normal. These symptoms are normal and should subside within a few days. You will not be able to follow your usual skincare routine and instead should follow the aftercare instructions given to you by your microneedling provider. You should try and stay out of the direct sunlight for at least a week and once you are cleared to use sunscreen, ensure you apply SPF50 to the area at all times.
How long do the results of microneedling last?
To get the very best results from microneedling, most experts recommend that you undergo several sessions. Typically, patients have between 3 and 5 sessions spaced apart at 6-weekly intervals. After this initial course of treatment, results may be maintained for up to 9 months. However, this can vary between patients. Your microneedling provider will be able to give you an estimated timeline based on your individual circumstances.
If you would like to find out more about the benefits of microneedling, or if you would like to schedule a consultation to see if you would be a good candidate for this procedure, please don’t hesitate to make an appointment at our office today. Aesthetic Surgical Associates is a full-service plastic surgery practice backed by decades of experience in the New Orleans area.