How does laser hair reduction work?
A laser emits a light that is absorbed by the pigment (melanin) in the hair. Cells that have a lot of melanin (dark coloured) absorb this light where it is converted to heat energy. Hair transfers heat to the hair follicles and destroys them, inhibiting or delaying future hair growth. Laser hair reduction effectively delays hair growth for long periods and the hair that grows out keeps becoming thinner and lighter after successive sessions. Such hair even when present is very less visible and not bothersome.Will I need multiple treatments?
You may need six to eight laser hair reduction sessions for an effective outcome. A hair follicle has to be in its anagen or growth stage for the laser to be effective. Follicles are in different stages at different times, so most people need multiple laser treatments. Sessions are usually about six to eight weeks apart. As the growth of hair slows down, the gap between sessions will increase. This timing helps capture more hairs in different growth phases. How long do the effects of laser hair reduction last?
Most people see about a 10% to 25% reduction in hair growth after the first treatment. After all your treatments, you may not have new hair growth for several months or years. Laser hair reduction effectively delays hair growth for long periods and the hair that grows out keeps becoming thinner and lighter after successive sessions that even present its very less visible and problematic. Lighter and thinner hair may still be present, hence the term laser hair reduction is used more appropriately rather than laser hair removal. In essence, there is such a massive reduction in hair thickness and speed of growth and hair often becomes minimally visible that the procedure is often termed as laser hair removal. There may or may not be a need for maintenance session depending on the indication for hair removal, initial growth of patient and presence of hormone abnormalities.
Who can have laser hair reduction?
Anyone with extra body hair can have laser hair reduction. It may improve your appearance or self-image. Many people also prefer not having to wax or shave repeatedly. People may get this treatment on any part of their body. Laser hair reduction treats excess hair growth caused by: Hirsutism
i.e. when women grow dark or coarse hair in areas where men usually have hair. Male hormones convert thin hair on the jawline, beard, neck and upper lip to thick dark terminal hair as seen in male beard and moustache. As females don’t have male hormones, this conversion of thin to thick hair does not normally happen in females. Normal female face does not have any thick hair on the jaw line, beard, and neck. However, in females with hormonal imbalance, thin hair gets converted to thick dark hair. Laser hair reduction entails converting this thick terminal black hair to fine, thin hair that are normally present in all females.
Such hair do not look bad and do not require shaving or waxing. However, the underlying hormonal forces act against the effects of laser and so more sessions of laser are required for hormone dependent sites such as upper lip, jawline, cheek and neck. Also, these patients may require more maintenance sessions to maintain the benefits of laser hair reduction.
We also recommend taking appropriate treatment for underlying hormonal disturbances to increase the efficacy of laser and reduce the number of sessions. Hypertrichosis
when men or women grow excess hair anywhere on their bodies. Unlike face and neck, hair on arms and legs are not dependent on hormones but on the genetics of the patient. Some individuals are generally more hairy than others since birth. Such hair respond very well to laser hair reduction and do not require hormonal tests. They generally require lesser maintenance as compared to hair on hormone dependent sites. Can I carry on with waxing/plucking, or epilation while undergoing laser?
Plucking, waxing or any other form of epilation pulls out the hair from its root. Without the hair, the laser light is not able to reach the hair root that is responsible for regenerating the hair, hence these methods of hair removal are not recommended while undergoing laser hair reduction. A gap of at least three weeks is ideal between waxing, plucking and epilation and your first laser hair reduction session. What method of hair removal can I use in between sessions?
You can however, shave your hair as many times as wanted as it does not affect the part of hair under the skin and does not interfere with the efficacy of laser. Also, shaving does not increase the hair growth or thickness of hair. What is the cost of laser hair reduction?
The cost of laser hair reduction depends on the size of area that is treated and ranges from 1500 to 20000 for a full body session. The total cost also depends on the number of sessions required as different body areas require different number of sessions. The number of sessions also depend on the hair growth and presence of hormonal abnormalities.
Is there pain during laser hair reduction?
It’s non-invasive and does not require any cuts in your skin. laser hair reduction when done using the triple wavelength diode laser machine is a completely painless procedure and does not require any anesthesia.
Is laser hair reduction safe?
laser hair reduction is an absolutely safe procedure when performed by or under supervision of a qualified dermatologist. There may mild redness or bumps that subside in a few hours. Why spending more to get a laser hair reduction at a dermatologist clinic is worth every penny?
At many cosmetic clinics and spa, lasers are performed by unqualified technicians or by doctors who are only have an MBBS or BAMS degree. Unlike western countries, no courses or qualification criteria are there for laser technicians or therapists in India. The skin therapist learns only by working with a more experienced person and do not have any theoretical knowledge or basis.
Many times, such laser technicians may misguide you to undertake full face laser treatment even though you may not have thick dark hair on cheeks, jawline and neck. Undertaking laser treatment on fine, thin, lightly coloured hair will not only be ineffective but also waste of your time and money. Furthermore, performing unnecessary laser on thin fine hair at hormone dependent sites can also have the opposite effect of stimulating hair, making them thick and dark coloured. At a dermatologist clinic all cosmetic procedures are performed under supervision of a dermatologist who will guide you well if your have any medical conditions such as leukoderma or vitiligo that make you an unsuitable candidate for laser hair reduction. So always choose a clinic with a doctor with appropriate government accredited postgraduate degree (MD/ DVD degree in dermatology) only. Beware of any quacks or other MBBS doctors who don’t have the MD/DVD/DNB degree in dermatology and posing themselves as dermatologist and flaunting invalid degrees such as PDCC, PGCC that have no accreditation or approval by government or National medical commission to work as dermatologist.