Pigmentation Truths: What You Need to Know to Maximise Results
Stop doing excessive “Laser Toning”!
“Doctor, I do not see any results from my previous laser toning treatments!” If this resonates with you, you are certainly not alone. Successful treatment of various pigmentation issues requires doctor expertise. Blindly doing “laser toning” with the same routine settings will not successfully treat your pigmentation. In fact, doing excessive and/ or too frequent “laser toning” can result in complications such as hypo or hyperpigmentation.
In this 5 minute read, I will address 5 key factors to maximise your pigmentation treatment results in a safe manner.
1. Diagnosis is key: first determine the type of pigmentation
The first and most important step is to ascertain the type of pigmentation. Not all pigmentations are the same. Knowing which type of pigmentation you have is important to determine the right treatment(s) for it.
A trained doctor should be able to determine the type and depth of pigmentation that you have, and provide the most cost-effective treatment approach for the best results. Sometimes, you may be suffering from more than one type of pigmentation and a discerning doctor will be able to pinpoint that.
An experienced doctor however, will go a step further to ascertain your skin type as it is an important consideration when treating pigmentation issues to maximise the results while minimising downtime (redness, swelling) and preventing complications (hypo or hyperpigmentation, burns, blisters). Common types of pigmentation I see and treat on a daily basis include: Melasma, Freckles, Solar Lentiges, Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, Hori’s Naevus etc.
2. A customised treatment approach gives results
Following proper diagnosis, a customised treatment approach is key to produce results. For example, based on the correct diagnosis, different laser settings (and not just laser “toning”) should be employed to properly treat the type and depth of pigmentation to produce optimum results. In general, pigmentation reduction can have excellent and predictable results with improvement of up to 70-90% through a customised treatment programme with a few treatment sessions spaced 3-4 weeks apart. Important considerations are time-to-results, cost-effectiveness and patient’s preferences.
3. Lasers are not always the only/ best treatment
Lasers are not always the only or best treatment for all types of pigmentation. More often than not, medical grade (not over-the-counter) bleaching creams such as Cyspera, Triluma, Hydroquinone and Azelaic acid usage guided by your doctor will increase the effectiveness of the treatments done in clinic. These treatments include Chemical peels, various types of Lasers and Rejuran (Polydeoxyribonucleotide- PDRN 婴儿针). Medical grade bleaching creams which are often less expensive can therefore be used to complement the above treatments to decrease treatment time-to-result and in the prevention of pigmentation recurrence.
4. Treat not just pigmentation
Skin quality matters! Improving one’s skin quality will not only reduce the appearance of pigmentations but will improve one’s facial aesthetics profile. When considering treatments to improve one’s overall appearance, other issues that affect skin quality such as large pores, uneven skin tone, texture and hydration should also be addressed. Through a combination of the above aesthetic treatments to address complexion issues for the entire face, skin quality and therefore appearance of pigmentations can be improved.
5. Post-treatment skin care is pertinent
Similar to proper nutrition post-workout, post-treatment skin care is pertinent to yield the best results and prevent side effects such as skin dryness and complications such as post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Moisturiser, post-recovery masks and sun-screen (broad-spectrum and at least SPF 40) should be used routinely post-treatment. The use of medical grade bleaching creams on a maintenance basis can help to prevent/ prolong recurrence of pigmentation issues. Proper post-treatment skin care is as if not more important than the treatment itself in the effective management of pigmentation disorders.
In summary, the successful treatment of pigmentation disorders in a cost-effective manner should be the standard of care. This requires doctor’s expertise to correctly match the treatment approach to type of pigmentation and consideration of patient ideas, concerns and expectations.
Ask us today with regards to your pigmentation woes!
Disclaimer: The material contained in this is for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice. The content is not intended to be a substitute for doctor's advice, diagnosis, or treatment.