If you’re looking to treat skin conditions including light scarring, discoloration, sun damage and stretch marks, a treatment called microdermabrasion might be useful. Microdermabrasion is a minimally abrasive treatment designed to sand the skin, helping remove the uneven, outer layer.

Microdermabrasion can offer several benefits, but it also comes with a few very minor risks. Here’s everything you need to know.

Benefits

 

Microdermabrasion offers the following benefits:

  • • Improves age spots and blackheads
  • • Improves hyperpigmentation (patches of darkened skin)
  • • Exfoliates the skin and gives it a refreshed appearance
  • • Reduces the appearance of stretch marks
  • • Reduces fine lines and wrinkles
  • • Reduces or eliminates enlarged pores
  • • Treats acne and scars often left by acne
  • • Thickens collagen, a protein in skin, to help give you a younger complexion

How does it work?

 

Microdermabrasion uses microparticles or a diamond-tipped wand to remove the top layer of skin (called the epidermis) and begin stimulating new cell growth. There are two kinds:

  • • The first involves a hand-held device that streams tiny crystals across the skin. At the same time, an attached vacuum suctions these crystals back into the machine, along with dead or loosened skin.
  • • The second, a newer approach, uses a diamond-tip wand to gently move across the skin and exfoliate it. This treatment takes about half an hour, and you may feel some mild scratching.

Results and Recovery

 

There is no downtime or recovery period following microdermabrasion. Your doctor may recommend a specific moisturizer or facial product to help enhance and prolong your result, but that’s the extent of it.

Depending on the severity of skin damage and the number of treatments you receive, your new look should be long-lasting. Some people have two microdermabrasion treatments per month to start, then move back to once per month as a maintenance plan.

Risks

 

You might experience brief discomfort from microdermabrasion, but this will only last a short period of time in most cases. It can include redness and swelling, and maybe dry or flaky skin for a few days. Also consider minor risks of bruising, and skin sensitivity to sun exposure following the procedure.

If you’re considering microdermabrasion, speak to your licensed aesthetician or plastic surgeon to determine if it might be right for you.

Our physicians are board-certified with the American Board of Plastic Surgery. We work with you toward your goals and make sure you feel comfortable throughout your cosmetic or reconstructive treatment.

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Sources:

 

“Microdermabrasion.” American Society of Plastic Surgeons. https://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/microdermabrasion

“Microdermabrasion.” American Academy of Dermatology. https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/cosmetic-treatments/microdermabrasion

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