Ever since tattoos became the emblem of youthful expression over 20 years ago, the number of people who currently have a tattoo is over half a million in the UK. This is quite a small percentage of the population when compared to the over 10 million individuals with tattoos in the US. This can be attributed to the more conservative attitudes that most Britons still harbour. For those few who had the clarity of mind to get a tattoo in their youth, such a decision might become quite a burden at a later time if it causes an impediment to job prospects or depicts the name of someone you’d rather forget. It is said that up to 50% of those who had a tattoo in their youth regret it, and if you’re one of those people you might be thinking of trying to get rid of yours. How does Laser Tattoo Removal work
Fortunately, there are a number of approaches to tattoo removal. It is worth noting that no one method has been shown to completely remove all traces of a tattoo. This is mainly because some of the pigments in a tattoo tend to penetrate deeper into the skin. This makes it hard to remove the pigment fully. You should always have a consultation with a licenced technician before beginning any treatment, as they should be able to tell you what results you’ll see.
Among all the methods of tattoo removal available, some of the more popular methods are briefly described below.
This technique involves rubbing the region with the tattoo with a wire brush or abrasive disc to remove a small layer of the dye impregnated skin. This procedure has to be carried out repeatedly until the tattoo is no longer visible. Therefore, it requires a considerable amount of time depending on the extent and intricacy of the tattoo. Many people have found this method too painful to continue with also, so this is not one for the faint hearted.
This method involves the soaking of the region with the tattoo in a saline solution with the goal of dissolving the pigment impregnated in the skin. The method is usually combined with dermabrasion and also requires a substantial amount of time to realize optimum results.
Scarification is similar to salabrasion in that it employs a liquid. However, the method replaces a saline solution with an organic acid. The acid denatures the top layer of pigmented skin cells which effectively killing them. This layer of dead skin cell peels off and is replaced by new cells with a lighter shade of the pigment used with the tattoo. This is again another method that takes some time, and the results are not always satisfactory if you want a complete removal.
This method involves freezing portions of the skin with the tattoo in order to numb all pain. Once numbed the frozen area is then surgically removed with a scalpel. The area is then kept under gauze to allow for the growth of new skin to cover the area. It is sometimes necessary to use skin grafts from other parts of the body if the tattoo covers a considerable area on the skin. Cryosurgery is quite an involved procedure with a long recovery time so not suitable for some people.
5. Laser Tattoo Removal
This last method is the most effective and efficient of all the methods available for tattoo removal. The term laser means Light Amplification by the Stimulated Emission of Radiation. It refers to the tool that produces intense high energy light that is then used to breakdown the pigments making up a tattoo. The laser light is delivered in pulses, which harmlessly pass through the layers of skin cells to the pigment where the light causes the pigment molecules to breakdown to smaller particles. These resulting particles are then removes by the body’s immune system like any other invading pathogens. The Lasers are highly accurate with makes that ideal for extensive and intricate tattoos. Furthermore the ability to instantly cauterize skin cells makes laser tattoo removal a low-pain, low-risk and bloodless alternative to tattoo removal.
Different types of lasers can be used in the removal of the same tattoo. This is because different colour pigments in the tattooed skin absorb laser light with different intensities. Dark pigments tend to absorb laser light more rapidly and are hence easiest to remove. Lighter hues need lasers of higher light intensities because they absorb light at lower level. This is why it is much easier to remove blue and black pigments than it is to remove yellow, red and green pigments. There are a number of risks associated with each method of tattoo removal but laser tattoo removal has the lowest risk of permanent scarring.
For optimum results you must complete the full course recommended during your consultation by your Skin Specialist and carefully follow the after-care instructions. The important of this will have been explained to you during your consultation and can also be found in your consent form that you sign before making the decision to go ahead with the treatment.
Given the information above it’s no wonder that laser treatment comes out as a popular choice for many of those people who regret a tattoo they had done in their younger years.
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