The Intense Pulsed Light system for treating acne releases a broad spectrum of light that is emitted in a series of short pulses, hence the machine' name, IPL. Yellow/green light destroys the bacteria that live in the skin and cause acne, while the red band light directly targets the sebaceous glands that cause outbreaks of acne. This targeted light, reaching deep into the skin, causes shrinkage of the inflamed glands and helps to prevent over-production of excess sebum, the bacterial oily substance that is at the root of an acne outbreak.
Almost everyone can be treated, except for very dark skinned or tanned individuals. Pregnant women or people taking the acne medication Roaccutane should not be treated with IPL.
The IPL is absorbed by the skin, and heats the skin very rapidly, creating a sharp, short-lived prickly sensation. No anaesthesia is required. Other than cooling down the skin, no after treatment intervention is required or needed. Most patients describe the discomfort as very moderate and acceptable for the high quality of outcomes from LalliCare Clinic treatments.
Some redness and a slight warming sensation are normal. A cooling pack will usually be applied to the skin to ease these symptoms. It will be necessary to avoid sun exposure or use a high protection sunscreen for 2 weeks after the treatment.
The treated area can become slightly red immediately after treatment. However, most patients experience no side effects and the redness usually disappears within a couple of hours. Very rarely the skin may become lighter or darker. It is possible that some hair loss will occur in the area treated. This hair loss could be permanent at the follicle level, so men should consider this possibility before agreeing to treatment of their beard/moustache area.
The number of treatments necessary varies from person to person, but typically 6 Intense Pulsed Light will result in significant improvement, depending on the severity of the condition. Intense Pulsed Light treatments should take place every two to three weeks.