Pico laser treatment has gained a lot of popularity in the field of aesthetic medicine. It is a non-surgical, non-invasive laser skin treatment that can address a variety of skin concerns. It is a new generation of laser technology, and unlike traditional laser treatments, it targets specific layers of skin and imparts a photomechanical effect which helps improve skin imperfections.
If you are struggling with pigmented spots, pores, acne scars, fine lines, and deep wrinkles, or want to improve the tone, texture, and complexion of your skin, Pico laser treatment might be the right choice.
What Does The Name “Pico Laser” Mean?
“Pico” is neither a company name nor a name of the person who first introduced this laser technology. Rather it is a Spanish word that is used in the metric system to denote one trillionth (10-12) part of a quantity.
Here, the word “Pico” in Pico laser refers to picoseconds. This indicates that the laser is fired in the form of ultra-short pulses of energy over a specified area in one trillionth part of a second or 1/1000th fraction of a nanosecond.
How Does Pico Laser Work?
Pico laser works by imparting the following effects on the skin;
Photomechanical Effect – Unlike older laser technologies in which a photo-thermal effect is produced, the Pico Laser Singapore works by generating a photomechanical effect. It is because the high energy waves are fired in very short pulse durations. So instead of generating heat in the targeted area, the pressure waves from the laser causes mechanical shattering and scattering of pigmented molecules into smaller fragments than traditional lasers.
Collagen Production – Collagen is a structural protein that provides support and firmness to the skin. In other words, it is the skeleton of the skin. When the amount of collagen declines, epithelial cells lose this support and become weakened, resulting in sagging and wrinkling of the skin. Tissue injury caused by Pico laser triggers the body’s natural healing process and increases the production of collagen in the skin.
Elastin Production – The laser also increases the production of elastin. Elastin is a connective tissue protein that is highly flexible and elastic. Due to this effect, Pico Laser treatment renders skin a softer, fuller, and younger-looking complexion to the skin.
How Is Pico Laser Treatment Done?
The steps generally followed during Pico Laser treatment, are given below. This is what you can expect for Pico Laser Treatment.
Consultation – In the initial consultation, the doctor will ask you about your skin concerns, and will examine your skin type and diagnose the areas of concern. The doctor will discuss the treatment plan, goals, and reasonable expectations of the treatment.
Appointment – Depending on your treatment plan, your laser treatment may be scheduled at least 2 weeks before or after any other type of laser or cosmetic treatments like chemical peels, etc.
Pre-Procedure Preparation – You will be advised to avoid retinoids for 2 to 4 days before the treatment day. Direct sun exposure and tanning beds should also be avoided.
Numbing – This is not usually required, but if you are anxious or sensitive to pain, a topical numbing cream will be applied over the targeted area before the procedure. It will make the procedure more comfortable for you.
Pico Laser Treatment – During the treatment, the doctor may switch around different laser settings to treat the targeted area of skin. The whole session will be concluded within 15 to 30 minutes after which you can resume your daily activities.
Aftercare – Like pre-procedural instructions, the doctor will advise you to protect your skin from exposure to heat and sunlight. Retinoid products will also be prohibited for 1 to 2 weeks as the skin is more sensitive after treatment. This is to ensure the optimal benefits of the treatment and to minimize the risks of side effects.
For What Conditions Pico Laser Treatment Can Be Used?
Pico laser can be used to treat common skin concerns such as:
- Pigmented lesions
- Sun damaged skin
- Dark spots
- Acne scars
- Wrinkles and fine lines
- Tattoo removal
How Does Pico Laser Help In Skin Rejuvenation?
The inevitable aging process, sunlight exposure, skin disorders, and even hereditary conditions can all lead to the development of different types of skin imperfections. These may include textural irregularities like pores, acne scars, and wrinkles; pigmentation problems like sunspots and freckles; and loss of skin tone and elasticity, etc. Pico laser can help to improve these issues and also aid in skin rejuvenation for a healthier looking complexion.
In this new laser technology, diffractive lens array (DLA) or micro-lens array (MLA) is used in the laser emitting machines to focus the laser light onto a small area and specific layer of skin bypassing the superficial layers. These concentrated high-energy beams produce micro-injury, termed as Laser-Induced Optical Breakdown (LIOB), under the skin.
The injury acts as a trigger and induces the skin to increase the production of connective tissue. As a result of this natural healing process of the body, collagen and elastin get deposited underneath the skin. This makes the skin tighter and firmer, and the appearance of wrinkles and pores starts to improve over time.
Moreover, Pico laser also breaks down melanin pigment, present in scars and pigmented dermal patches, etc, into minute particles and disperse them. These small particles are then naturally removed by the body over time. As a result, scars and pigmented lesions becomes lighter or less visible.
In this way, Pico Laser treatment causes rejuvenation of the skin in the most natural way without causing any damage to the superficial dermal layers. Thus, smoother, clearer and young-looking skin is what you can look forward to with sequential treatments.
What Is The Price Of Pico Laser In Singapore?
The cost of Pico laser Singapore ranges from $250 to $600 per session. The total cost for treatment depends upon multiple factors, including;
- Number of treatment sessions required
- Type of medical condition being treated (e.g. skin pigmentation, removal of tattoos, treatment of wrinkles, acne, scars, etc)
- Patient skin type (sensitive skin may need more sessions/rounds)
- Experience and skills of the doctor
- Follow-ups, checkups, and medications
How Many Treatment Sessions Do You Need?
It is difficult to generalize how many treatment sessions will be required because it depends upon the type and severity of the problem being treated. During your initial consultation, your doctor may give you a rough estimation about the number of sessions necessary to get the desired effects.
Most patients, however, need 3 to 4 treatments minimally to achieve noticeable improvements. A gap of at least 2 to 4 weeks is required between two consecutive treatments, and if you have sensitive skin, the treatment interval can sometimes be as long as 8 weeks.
Does The Treatment Hurt?
As laser generates pressure waves in the skin, you may feel a slight rubber band snapping sensation during the procedure. Patients observe very little or no discomfort during the treatment procedure. Majority of patient finds the discomfort mild and tolerable without any kind of prior local anesthesia or numbing.
However, if you are conscious or sensitive to pain, you should ask the doctor to apply a topical numbing cream over the target area, before the treatment. This will make the treatment painless and more comfortable for you.
What Is The Downtime Of Pico Laser Singapore?
In most cases, Pico laser treatment is completely non-invasive and does not involve downtime. You may return to your daily work routine immediately after the procedure.
In certain treatments involving scar or skin rejuvenation, when a more aggressive laser settings is used, there may be slight downtime after treatment. However, this will be advise by your doctor prior to treatment.
Are There Any Side Effects Of Pico Laser Treatment?
Despite high energy pulses concentrated over a small region of skin, Pico Laser does not cause any kind of damage or burn to the superficial dermal layers.
The skin may, however, feel slightly dry and sunburned, and the patient may observe redness over the treatment area but it is temporary. It subsides quickly within few hours after the treatment.
Other side effects may include swelling, itching, micro-bruises, and discomfort. The risks of post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation and hypo-pigmentation are lesser as compared to the traditional laser treatments.
How Long Do The Results Last?
Results are permanent for certain treatments like removal of scar marks, tattoos, and some pigmented spots or patches, as the ink or pigment is completely obliterated by the laser.
The skin rejuvenating effects, on the other hand, are long-lasting. However, as other skin concerns like pores, wrinkles, pigmentation, etc, are mostly due to the inevitable aging process, the results begin to fade after some time. The longevity of the results depends upon the speed of the aging phenomenon and the lifestyle of the patient.
Most of the patients enjoy the long term effects of Pico laser treatment and may only need to undergo touch-up treatment rounds periodically after every half year to maintain the results.
Pico laser treatment has become an effective aesthetic procedure for the skin. It imparts a photomechanical effect and helps in skin rejuvenation by inducing the production of collagen and elastin. It may take few sessions till the desired effects are achieved. The end-result is a softer, glowing, and younger-looking skin. The downtime and recovery period are almost negligible, and there are fewer chances of side effects if treatment is done under the hands of an experienced doctor.