Chemical Peel Treatment

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What is a chemical peel?

  • Chemical peeling is a technique used to improve the appearance of the skin. In this treatment a chemical solution is applied to the skin which causes the skin to get rid of undesirable changes that may have taken place such as pimples, pigmentation and wrinkles.
  • Depth of the peeling (Superficial, medium or deep) is chosen considering type of skin, damage done to skin & desired results.
  • During a chemical peel most patients experience a warm to hot sensation that may last for 2 – 3 minutes and maybe followed by some stinging. There are lunch time peels which permit the individual to go back to work immediately after the procedure without any special precaution except use of sunscreen. Deeper peels may require medications, special precautions, and may require a longer recovery time.

What can a chemical peel do?

  • Treat all types of pimples and mild scarring
  • Improve skin texture and colour
  • Diminish pigmentation such as sun spots, age spots, freckles or blotchiness
  • Reduce fine lines and wrinkles
  • Before filling you up with details about the technicalities involved with chemical peels, the dos and don’ts, the suitability of you as a candidate and other whatnot, we will share with you the list of what lies ahead for you.
  • A chemical peel is a technique which involves the application of an medicated solution in order to improve the properties of the skin on the face, neck or hands mainly. The chemical solution thus applied to the skin causes it to exfoliate and eventually peel off giving way to the generation of fresh skin.
  • The new, regenerated skin is usually smoother and less wrinkled than the older one because it has come up as a result of the regenerative mode the tissues had got into.
    Salicylic acid, glycolic acid , Alpha Hydroxy acids (AHA), Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) or phenol are the most commonly applied chemicals for the chemical peeling procedure.
  • Superficial Peels: Mostly done by Alpha Hydroxy Acids or other mild acids which are capable of penetrating only the outer layer of skin. These peels work to gently exfoliate and hence improve upon mild cases of skin discoloration and rough skin texture.
  • Medium Peels: Done using Glycolic or Trichloroacetic Acid, these peels have the ability to penetrate up to the middle layers of the skin in order to remove damaged skin cells. The treatment helps in reducing age spots, fine lines, wrinkles, freckles as well as moderate extents of skin discoloration.
  • Deep Peels: Involve usage of Trichloroacetic acid or phenol in stronger concentrations to deeply penetrate beyond the middle skin layer and remove the damaged cells. The treatment is effective in removal of moderate line, freckles, and shallow scars.

A Chemical Peel is useful for the following purposes:

  • Reduction of fine lines and wrinkles
  • Removal of dead skin cells
  • Smoothening of the rough texture
  • Improvement of skin hydration
  • Skin softening and reduction of open pores
  • Lightening of pigments and dark spots
  • Reduction in the appearance of acne scars
  • Reduction and drying out of active acne
  • Exfoliation of razor bumps
  • Reduction of ingrown hair
  • Enhancement of homecare programs by allowing deeper penetration of active products

Generally, Chemical Peels work best for all kind of skin type. if the prospect has any of the following, they should rather avoid going for a chemical peel:

  • In case you are pregnant or have been nursing
  • Took Accutane within the past six months
  • Suffer from psoriasis, eczema, dermatitis or rosacea, cut or broken skin, sunburns or active Herpes simplex 1 sores.
  • Have used Retin-A, Renova, prescription skin care products containing ascorbic acid, bleaching or skin lightening agents or other acid based products within the past 48 hours

Pre Procedure Instructions:

  • Although a tanned skin can be treated with either Microdermabrasion or an acid peel, it is not advisable to perform a skin peel on skin that has recently been exposed to intense UV. Two weeks between UV exposure (natural sun or tanning booth) and skin treatment is recommended.
  • Do not scrub, exfoliate or use peeling products such as AHA’s – Glycolic acid on the skin for at least 3 days prior to a skin peel, unless advised otherwise by your practitioner as part of your skin programme.
  • If you are aiming to reduce pigmentation problems, or as a general precaution you may be asked to use a pigment suppressing product for two or six weeks before peeling the skin along with Retinoids. These products are important in prepping your skin so as to avoid adverse reactions.
  • Do not have any laser/heat treatments for at least three days prior to your skin peeling.

During the Procedure

  • Usually, a stinging or itching sensation is experienced but it cannot be called discomforting. Rather, a slight itch or sting is necessary to know that the procedure is working.
    Once this sensation subsides, the acid applied is neutralized using either of water or sodium bicarbonate. This feels very cold to the skin and puts the itch to rest completely.

Post Procedure Instructions

  • Superficial peels require usually one to seven days to heal. Treated skin turns red initially and might scale a bit too. Moisturisation helps and sunscreen should be applied adequately and daily. Makeup can be worn from the next day itself.
  • Medium peels require seven to 14 days to heal. Just like superficial peels, the skin gets red but it swells too. The skin starts crusting and peeling off within this period only. Eyelids may swell shut and in some cases, blistering may also be observed. Do not panic for these symptoms are natural. As per the dermatologist’s suggestions, the skin must be soaked daily for a specified period followed by ointment application. Antiviral medicines need to be taken for a duration of up to 14 days post procedure. Sun exposure needs to be avoided completely till the healing is complete. Camouflage make-up can be done after a week but it is necessary to schedule a follow-up appointment to monitor the progress made.
  • Deep peels require 14 to 21 days to heal. The treated area is bandaged to avoid any foreign particle contact. The skin requires being soaked four to six times daily followed by applying ointments as prescribed by the dermatologist. A thick layer of moisturizer also needs to be applied for up to three weeks after the treatments. Sun exposure needs to be avoided for three to six months post the treatment. Camouflage treatment may be worn after two weeks only.
  • Slight discoloration might be observed in people with sensitive skin, however, the same gets fine with time.
  • If not done correctly, chemical peels can leave scars and hence the experience of the dermatologist or the therapist matters a lot.