- What causes acne?
The skin has lots of small sebaceous glands in the hair follicles. These glands secrete an oily substance called sebum. Sebum is excreted out on the surface of the skin through small pores, keeping the skin healthy, smooth and supple. Due to hormonal changes during puberty and premenstruation there is an excess output of the sebum. At the same time the dead cells lining the opening of the follicles are not shed properly and clog up the follicles. These two combined factors cause a build up of sebum in the follicles. This causes blackheads and whiteheads. For some people, their acne does not progress beyond this stage. However, in some people, the build up of oil in the follicles creates an ideal environment for a bacteria called P.acne’s to grow. These bacteria normally live harmlessly on the skin but when this ideal environment is created, they grow. They feed on the sebum and produce substances that causes a response from the body’s immune system. This inflames the skin and creates the redness associated with spots. In more inflammatory acne cysts develop beneath the skin’s surface. These cysts can rupture spreading the infection into nearby tissue and this can result in scarring.
- What are the conventional solutions for acne?
Everyone who has acne would have tried out various means to get rid of the problem.
Advice from friends and advertisements promising fast cures often does not help. Over the counter medications usually the first to be tried out. These include topical ointments like Benzol Peroxide, Salicylic acid, Glycolic acid, Sulfur, Azelac acid Retinoids. They act by killing the bacteria and by unblocking the pores. However, they have limited effect, and are only good for controlling the spread of acne.
Prescription products such as Oral Antibiotics – minocycline, doxycycline, tetracycline, erythromycin, azithromycin as well as topical Antibiotics like erythromycin gel, and Synthetic Vit. A derivatives like retinoic acid cream, are more effective, but are expensive and can have significant side effects.
- What is the starlight solution?
Each one of the conventional solutions has its advantages & disadvantages. Some give good results but have severe side effects, others are well tolerated but with poor results.
Now there is a better option with the starlight Intense flash device. The Starlight device involves therapeutic light energy which erases acne while protecting surrounding skin.
- How does the laser work?
An intense flash of light is generated, and passed through special filters, before being directed into the skin. The filters are chosen so that specific components of skin get heated by the light. In the case of acne, a blue light filter is chosen. Blue light has the property that it kills P. acne’s bacteria. The pores of the follicle are also unclogged with the light energy. In addition, the light also closes the small blood vessels which give the “red” appearance around the acne lesions. The application of the starlight is safe, painless, and suitable for all skin types. Unlike many other methods of treatment, it does not involve physical penetration of the skin, and has no side effects.
- What is the procedure for the starlight solution?
First protective eye care is worn by the person undergoing the treatment, as well as the person performing the treatment.
A hand held treatment head is placed against the skin, which is covered with a cooling conducting gel. The pulses of light are delivered through a filter which is selected based on the person’s skin type. The area is simultaneously cooled. Most people feel little or no pain. All normal activities can be resumed immediately after treatment.
The treatment is generally administered as a series of 3-4 sessions -20 minutes each at 2 week intervals. The whole face is treated, as this gives a more uniform and aesthetically pleasing result.
- Who can be treated?
All the 5 basic forms of Acne – Blackheads. Whiteheads, Papules or red Pimples, Pustules, Cysts or Nodules can be treated. There is no restriction on the type or color of the skin that can be treated.
- Who should not undergo the treatment?
Pregnant women, diabetic or epileptic persons, and people who are on medication like Accutane, Steroids, or anticlotting agents should not undergo the treatment.
- What is conventional solution for anti- ageing?
There have been numerous treatment developed to improve the appearance and health of photo aged and pigmented skin, including dermabrasion, glyocolic acid peels, & laser skin resurfacing. All these approaches rely on peeling of layers of skin, to cause a controlled injury to the dermis (or the inner layer of the skin). The injury caused to the dermis stimulates the skin to produce new elastin and collagen, reversing some of the effects of aging , and giving the skin a younger, more even and more elastic feel.
However, since these methods involve peeling off the top layers of the skin, they are often more painful, and require a prolonged recovery period.
- What is photo rejuvenation?
NOW there is a safer, gentler, and less complicated solution-with the Intense Pulsed Light Device. Photo rejuvenation involves dosing the skin with therapeutic light energy which erases skin damage while protecting healthy surrounding skin. Not only does it lead to an immediate improvement in the appearance of the skin (somewhat like a facial, important just before you have an important event, like a party or a wedding to attend), long term improvement in the skin texture, colour and appearance is also seen. After several sittings, the skin has significantly better complexion and glow, fine wrinkles and lines disappear the skin looks fresher and younger.
- How does laser work in photo rejuvenation technique?
An intense flash of light is generated, and passed through special filters, before being directed into the skin. The filters are chosen so that specific components of skin get heated by the light. In this case, the filter is chosen so that there is slight heating of the dermis-just enough to stimulate the production of collagen and elastin, but not enough to cause any lasting damage to the skin. A special cold light tip protects the upper layer of the skin from inadvertent damage. The Light energy has a stimulating effect on the skin thereby increasing its production of collagen. Overall, this results in an improvement in the skin with – more even colored tone, smaller pore size, smoother texture, a more radiant complexion and a revitalized appearance of the skin.
- What is the procedure?
First, protective eye wear is worn by the person undergoing the treatment, as well as the person performing the treatment. This is to prevent eye damage which could be caused by the repeated flashes of light.
A hand held treatment head is placed against the skin, which is covered with a cooling with a cooling conducting gel. The pulses of light are delivered through a filter which is selected based on the person’s skin type. The area is simultaneously cooled. Most people feel little or no pain. Each flash feels like a small pinprick. Activities can be resumed immediately after treatment.
The treatment is generally administered as a series of 6-8 sessions – 20 minutes each at 2 week intervals. The whole face is treated, as this gives a more uniform and aesthetically pleasing result.
- Who can undergo the treatment?
Photo rejuvenation is suitable for persons who are seeking a non-invasive, minimal risk solution to smoother and youthful looking skin. It is often a nice alternative to a facial, as it not only gives the skin an immediate glow, it also leads to a longer term improvement is the skin.
- Who should not undergo the treatment?
Pregnant woman, diabetic or epileptic persons, and people who are on medication like Accutane, Steroids, or anti-clotting agents should not undergo the treatment.
- What is the pre and post procedure care for photo rejuvenation?
Avoid the sun for 4-6 weeks before the treatment to ensure that your skin is as close possible to its natural color. Remove all makeup / cosmetics with a good cleanser. Avoid smoking and alcohol for at least two hours before the procedure. A treatment test patch will ensure the correct settings for your skin. The purpose of the test patch is not to test the efficacy of the treatment, but to determine the correct dose of light which is safe for your skin.
- What is the post treatment care for photo rejuvenation?
The area treated can be red and uncomfortable for a few hours after treatment. If this is uncomfortable you can soothe the area with a cold towel or cold pack. Soothing preparations, like Aloe Vera Gel can be used but they must not contain anti-inflammatory or blood thinning properties.
Avoid anti-inflammatory or blood thinning medications like ibuprofen, aspirin for 7 days.
Avoid smoking and alcohol for at least two hours preferably the whole day.
Refrain from make-up that day – this will allow the skin to cool naturally.
Be gentle when drying or rubbing the area.
Try and avoid sun exposure during the time that you are going for repeated sessions. If sun exposure cannot be avoided, you may use a sun screen with a SPF > 40 to protect the skin during this time.