When you choose a talented and experienced artist, tattoos can be stunning works of art. But, mistakes can happen! A bad tat doesn’t have to be forever., thankfully. This Q&A will guide you through the process of permanent tattoo removal in Virginia, including what type of results to expect.
Is There How Long Does Permanent Tattoo RemovaMore Than One Method of Eliminating Unwanted Tattoos?
Yes, there are options. Previously, the only two ways to remove tattoos were dermabrasion and surgery. Thankfully, there’s now laser tattoo removal, which is the preferred method for safe, effective, predictable, and comfortable results.
Dermabrasion involves sanding down your skin and can lead to unpredictable results. Surgery, on the other hand, is exactly what you think. The tattoo is cut out and your skin is stitched back together. Obviously, this can result in significant scarring.
Both of these methods can be incredibly painful, and recovery isn’t an easy road after either one. That’s why patients are now choosing laser tattoo removal as the best option.
How Does Laser Tattoo Removal Work?
A specialized type of laser delivered short pulses of heat energy to break down the ink. This means less risk of overheating the skin. It’s a great option for patients with darker skin tones. One session of tattoo removal can take anywhere from 30 minutes to one hour.
Does Tattoo Removal Hurt?
There is no reason to be concerned about pain during laser tattoo removal. Your provider will apply a topical numbing cream before beginning treatment. If you can handle a tattoo, you can certainly handle laser tattoo removal!
Are There Side Effects From Laser Tattoo Removal?
Side effects from any laser treatment are to be expected. After tattoo removal, you may experience redness, swelling, discomfort, and blistering. It is also possible to notice temporary skin discoloration and hyperpigmentation. These side effects are all normal, usually lasting around a week, and they typically go away on their own.
How Do I Prepare for Laser Treatment?
There are a few steps you should take to prepare for permanent tattoo removal in Virginia.
You should begin four weeks prior to your appointment by avoiding prolonged exposure to the sun. Always wear sunscreen when outside, even on cloudy days. Sunburns can make tattoo removal uncomfortable and leave you at risk for adverse reactions.
If you smoke, it’s a good idea to quit – or at least stop for a while. Smoking affects your blood vessels and interferes with your body’s ability to heal properly.
On the day of your appointment, wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing. Eat before your appointment, and drink plenty of fluids too. Be sure the area to be treated is clean with no makeup, perfumes, lotions, oils, or deodorants.
If pain is a concern, it is okay to take non-aspirin pain medication about thirty minutes before your appointment. Do not take aspirin or ibuprofen, as they may increase your chance of bruising.
Will I Need More Than One Session?
Yes, you’ll need multiple visits, as the ink cannot be broken down in one session and to do so would not be safe for you. The number of permanent tattoo removal sessions you need depends on many factors including:
- Age of your tattoo (faded ink is usually easier to remove)
- Ink color(s) and depth
- Location on the body
- Medications you are currently taking
- Skin tone
- Your general health
You’ll need to heal in between laser tattoo removal sessions for the best results. You can expect to schedule your tattoo removal sessions at least six weeks apart to allow time for healing, although it can be longer. Follow your laser expert’s treatment plan for best results.
How Quickly Will I See Laser Tattoo Removal Results?
Most patients start to see the ink fading after three sessions. It can take several months to see the full effects, depending on the complexity of your tattoo.
What Should I Know About Aftercare?
Follow all instructions given to you by your provider regarding how to care for your skin after laser tattoo removal, which is likely to include the following:
- Keep the treatment site clean and dry for several days.
- If you experience uncomfortable swelling, apply hydrocortisone cream to help. Vitamin E oil can aid in healing damaged skin cells.
- If you notice blisters larger than a dime, contact your provider for recommendations on how to treat them. Keep an antibacterial ointment or cream handy just in case.
- Do not pick at scabs if they occur. Instead, let them fall off naturally.
- On the day of your permanent tattoo removal session, plan to take it easy. There is no downtime for recovery needed, but exercise increases blood flow which can exacerbate swelling and blistering.
- Continue avoiding prolonged sun exposure. The last thing you want is a burn on your skin after you’ve had laser treatment. When you are going to be outside, be sure to wear protective clothing and sunscreen.
Choose Generations Medical Aesthetics for Permanent Tattoo Removal in Virginia!
We get it. Bad tattoos happen. Don’t spend the rest of your life trying to carefully camouflage the inky embarrassment! Call us today at 703-439-1104 to book your consultation and discover how you can benefit from laser tattoo removal.
Generations Medical Aesthetics is the leading skin laser center in Northern Virginia. Our providers specialize in many advanced laser treatments including tattoo removal. Our goal is to make sure the service you receive exceeds all your expectations, so please give us a call!