Laser Hair Removal

Permanent hair reduction with Candela lasers.

Lasers are the most effective tools in the treatment of excess hair of the face and body. Beachwood Medical Spa uses the Candela GentleLase and Candela GentleYag lasers, widely considered to be the most effective lasers available for hair removal. We utilize only Ohio certified aesthetic therapists, who specialize in laser hair removal under the supervision of Dr. Steven Goldman, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. This is not a national chain using inexpensive, less effective equipment. This is a medical spa that is part of Dr. Goldman’s plastic surgery practice. This means that you will be treated with the most advanced technology available, in the safest environment possible, with a personalized level of service only available in the Medical Spa environment.

How does laser hair removal work?

Lasers create powerful beams of light of a specific frequency or color. Lasers travel in a focused beam that does not dissipate or spread out as it travels. If the right color of light is used, the laser can travel through the skin until it hits a structure, like a blood vessel or hair follicle, that absorbs the light. Hair removal lasers are absorbed by the dark hair follicle but not the lighter skin around it. When absorbed, the light creates heat that can destroy the follicle. The Food and Drug Administration has emphasized that this process cannot guarantee permanent hair removal only permanent reduction, since some hair follicles may recover over time.

How many treatments are needed and who is a candidate?

Typically 6-9 sessions are required, usually spaced 6 weeks apart. Treatment is performed in the medical office; no anesthesia is needed. Ideal patients have dark hair and light skin. Generally coarser hair is eliminated most effectively, because the larger follicles absorb more laser light. Finer hair, light (especially, blond or grey) hair will require multiple treatments because less light is absorbed by the lighter colored hair. Tan and darker skin patients may be better candidates for the GentleYag laser, which has less potential to cause lightening or darkening of the skin. The main risk of laser hair reduction is lightening or darkening of the skin.

Why go to Beachwood Medical Spa instead of a chain?

At Beachwood Medical Spa we not only have the most advanced lasers, we know how to use them. Safety, efficacy, and comfort are paramount to us. Dr. Goldman uses a variety of lasers in his office, including the Candela GentleLase and GentleYag for hair removal (the GentleYag is also used for spider veins) and the Fraxel Re:pair carbon dioxide laser for wrinkle reduction and skin tightening. His expertise in the use of multiple lasers ensures that you will have the best opportunity for an optimal result. Every patient meets with Dr. Goldman prior to beginning treatment to review the risks, benefits, and nuances of laser treatment.

How does the laser treatment work?

The laser creates a beam of high-intensity light that penetrates deep into skin tissue where it delivers a controlled amount of therapeutic heat.  Candela’s patented Dynamic Cooling Device™ (DCD™) technology protects the upper layers of your skin with a cooling burst of cryogen.  Together, the long-pulse laser and DCD cooling offer optimal treatment with minimal side effects.

What can I expect during treatment?

Treatment will take place at Beachwood Medical Spa office.  You will wear safety eyewear to protect your eyes from the laser light.  Dr. Goldman’s aesthetic therapist will guide the laser to the treatment areas with a small handheld probe.  Each laser pulse may be preceded and followed by a short pulse of cooling spray.  A treatment could take as little as a few minutes to as long as an hour, depending on the area and condition being treated.

Does it hurt?

Some patients may feel a slight discomfort with the laser pulse, sometimes described as the snapping of a rubber band on the skin.  This discomfort is minimized by Candela’s DCD cooling.  For some patients, a topical anesthetic may be used prior to treatment.  Be sure to discuss this with your practitioner.

How do I prepare for treatment?

Patients scheduled for hair removal should avoid electrolysis or hair waxing for six weeks prior to treatment.  If you have had a history of perioral herpes and are scheduled for facial hair treatment, prophylactic antiviral therapy may be prescribed.  Also, any hair should be shaved, and your skin should be thoroughly cleaned and dried, removing any makeup, cream or oils on its surface before laser treatment.

What can I expect after treatment?

Patients should avoid sun exposure before and after treatment, and should apply sun block (SPF 30 or above) when going outdoors.

Are there side effects?

Your risks are minimal.  Side effects may include purpura (a laser bruise), redness, blistering, hyperpigmentation, hypopigmentation, and swelling in the treated area – these usually do not last more than a few days.  Permanent side effects, such as hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation or scarring, are rare.

What precautions should I take after treatment?

After laser treatment, avoid sun exposure.  In the first few days after treatment, don’t scrub or rinse the treated areas with abrasive skin cleansers.  Your practitioner may advise additional precautions.

Are these treatments covered by insurance?

Most insurance companies do not offer reimbursement for cosmetic procedures.  Some carriers will, however, cover the treatment of disfiguring birthmarks such as hemangiomas.  Consult your insurance carrier for conclusive information.

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