You have finally started your laser tattoo removal treatment! Now you are home and you realize that you forgot everything the laser tattoo removal specialist told you about properly caring for your treated area. If you are concerned that you are experiencing something out of the ordinary, you should find the information below to reassure you that the healing process is actually going smoothly. Following your aftercare instructions will ensure a speedy and healthy recovery.
What can you expect after treatment?
Laser tattoo removal is a relatively simple outpatient procedure. However, knowing exactly what to expect and how to care for the area will make your overall experience that much better.
Here are instructions to properly care for the newly treated area.
- You must remove your bandages three hours after leaving the office.
- Keep the area clean and dry while it is healing. You may clean the area with soap and water and gently pat the area dry, do not rub it. You can shower three hours after your laser tattoo removal treatment, but we strongly advise you not to allow high pulsating hot water to hit the treated area.
- If the area itches, do not scratch it. A cool compress may relieve the itching. We offer a variety of medical grade skin care products intended for laser treated skin to assist with your recovery. Avoid over the counter products that are grease based or have perfumes that will have a higher alcohol content.
- It will more than likely be a little raised, swollen and tender. Some people may experience bruising that normally resoves within a few days. If inflammation or discomfort arises, try applying a cool compress to the area for up to 24 hours after the treatment, alternatating 10 minutes on/10 minutes off. Tylenol or Ibuprophen may be taken to help with these symptoms if they are medications you have safely used in the past and if they do not interfere with current medications that you are taking (use as directed on the packaging).
- Never Fear! Blisters may arise and are a possible side effect of laser treatment. If you notice them, it will commonly be within the first 8 to 24 hours of your laser tattoo removal treatment. As part of the healing process, blisters mean your immune system is trying to heal by removing the ink from the skin. Do not break blisters, allow them to drain on their own. We feel that blisters should not be an intentional end result of treatment, only a possible side effect. But they are a side effect and are not cause for concern. They will usually dry up within a week and may slightly peel or flake.
- Do not pick at any blisters, scabs or crusts that may form. This may result in scarring and infection. We will always put the integrirty of your skin first and need you to do the same! You will find the healing process is similar to that of a new tattoo.
- Keep the treated area free of makeup, lotions or perfumes at least 48 hours after the treatment. It is best to keep the area completely free of any products during the entire healing process. Avoid sunless tanning products at the treated area for two weeks before and after your appointments.
- No sun exposure or tanning beds. This is extremely important to protect the treated area for three months after laser tattoo removal treatment. If you’re going to be in the sun and can’t keep the area covered, you will need to use a true zinc based SPF 30 or greater on the treated area.
Regular SPF will not suffice…it needs to be a zinc based product.
- Avoid swimming pools, hot tubs and Jacuzzis until after your scabs and blisters have healed.
- Drink lots of water and try to live as healthy of a lifestyle as you can. This will help pass the ink pigment as quickly as possible.
- Loss of skin pigment in the treated area is common and usually temporary.
- Healing is usually complete within a week, but can last several weeks.
We will follow up with you within 24 hours of your treatment and you are always welcome to contact us with any questions or concerns.
If you are experiencing symptoms that are not listed above, be sure to contact us or visit your doctor immediately.