Are Laser Hair Removal Treatments Safe?

You’ve likely heard about laser hair removal as an effective method of body hair elimination, but you may not be certain about whether or not it is safe for you. Here’s what to know.

Laser hair removal has been growing in popularity since its introduction to the public. It is often heralded as a safe, effective, and long-lasting treatment for stubborn body hair and a great way to avoid the peskiness of shaving, waxing, sugaring, or other short-term body hair removal methods. However, some are not sure about whether it is actually safe. If you still have questions about whether laser hair removal is a safe method for you, read on for information you should know.

What to Think About Before You Have Laser Hair Removal

Before you schedule your first laser hair removal appointment, there are a few things you should think about. The first thing you should consider is where on your body you would like to achieve lasting hair removal. Laser hair removal can be effective on most parts of the body that grow hair, and is most popularly used on the underarms, legs, and bikini line area. However, you should not use laser hair removal on or around your delicate eyelid area. The second thing to know going into your laser hair removal session is that it is not a one and done process. Laser hair removal, for most patients, takes about six treatments to achieve lasting, complete effects. 

The last thing you may want to think about before you head into that appointment is what will happen during your session. For many people, knowing what to expect can calm the nerves of their first time getting the treatment. Your provider will clean the area of your body that will be receiving the laser hair removal first. Then they will provide you with protective goggles. During the actual treatment, your provider will treat the hair with a powerful laser. Many people describe this experience as being snapped by a rubber band against their skin. It should be mildly uncomfortable, but not unbearably painful.

Safety of Laser Hair Removal

All in all, laser hair removal is a safe treatment, but there are some side effects that could occur after treatment. These side effects include mild swelling around the area that you are treating, pigment changes—especially in darker skin tones—around the affected area, slight redness or irritation, and blistering or scarring of the area being treated. While these side effects could be uncomfortable, they are highly treatable and should not be permanent.

Laser hair removal is safe for most people, but there are some conditions that make the treatment unsafe. First, if you are pregnant, it is best to avoid laser hair removal. Other risk factors include those who have or have had skin cancers, people who are on certain acne medications, those who have raised keloid scars, and those who have genital herpes or cold sores. 

Cost of Treatment

Laser hair removal, while effective and long lasting, can be a little pricey. The typical price for a laser hair removal session is $389. However, this number does not include taxes or other fees assessed by your provider’s office. Always consult the office for a price if you are budgeting ahead for the treatment. While laser hair removal can be expensive, the long-lasting and effective nature of the treatment means that it should be a short upfront investment for a long-term benefit.

After Your Treatment

After laser hair removal, your skin might feel a little red, inflamed, or sensitive. You can apply a cold pack or compress to the area to reduce swelling. You should also make sure to stay out of direct natural light that could further irritate the area. 

What Should I Do if There is a Problem?

If you have any problems during or after your laser hair removal treatment, you should first speak to your provider. A professional of laser hair removal in Philadelphia or your locality will be able to assist with next steps. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, you should always seek the help of your doctor or an emergency physician.

Laser hair removal is a popular and largely safe option for those who want a long-lasting and effective option for body hair management. However, there are some side effects you should be aware of and some risk factors that would mean that laser hair removal should be avoided. Always consult your provider or a physician before starting laser hair removal treatments if you are unsure about the safety of the method.

Photo by Önder Örtel

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