How long should you wait between laser tattoo removals?

When people get a tattoo, they might pick one that eventually they no longer wish to sport on their bodies. They may then seek laser tattoo removal to be rid of the ink they want gone for good. Laser tattoo removal is a process that takes time to do correctly.

How Long Between Sessions?

Laser tattoo removal works by breaking down pigments in the skin to make them small enough to be carried away and flushed out of the body by the white blood cells. The process does do some damage to the tissue which means that healing time is essential.

Most laser removal technicians recommend sessions spread out in at least four week intervals. Some even suggest 5 to 8 weeks between laser sessions. It’s dependent on variables including the client’s healing speed and the colors of pigment treated. The ink needs time to be slowly removed by the body and the skin tissue itself must heal enough to resume treatments.

What Can Clients Do To Speed Up Their Healing?

The good news for clients is they can help themselves heal a bit faster by being proactive before and after their laser sessions. Even though healing is a natural bodily process, the choices clients make will definitely make it faster and easier on themselves.

Before Treatment:
When planning to undergo laser tattoo removal, one of the most important things is not to expose the treatment area to sunlight. Limit sun exposure and avoid tanning beds for at least 4 weeks prior to the session.

After Treatment:
Once a client has had a laser session, they must make sure to take care of the treated area. The first 48 hours are critical to allow for proper healing. Some ways that clients may do this include:

  • Avoiding tight clothing over the area
  • Avoiding moisture such as steam rooms, saunas, and swimming pools
  • Avoiding sun cream or other lotions
  • Avoiding using makeup over the treated area
  • Avoiding harsh physical activity

In the first 48 hours after treatment, the skin may be warm and irritated. One way to relieve this is wrapping something like a bag of frozen peas in a towel and applying it to the area. It’s not advised to put ice or cold packs directly on the newly treated skin as it can impede healing. Make sure cold items are wrapped before applying them. After this initial period, the skin will slowly become less irritated and normal activities can resume.

How Much Ink Can Be Treated Per Sitting?

Tattoos that are exceptionally large or contain significant amounts of dark pigments will absorb more of the laser’s energy. These types of tattoos will need to be done in stages for safety and to ensure proper healing after treatment. Scarring and burns can occur if safety measures are not implemented.

For tattoos that are lighter in color, it is possible to treat larger areas at one time with less risk of side effects. The technician will assess the depth, color, and other factors when deciding how much treatment is safe for each session.

Keep In Mind

Although removing tattoos is something people want to hurry along, patience is crucial. Taking precautions such as treating smaller areas and spacing out sessions appropriately will pay off in the long run. Rushing the process will increase risk of damage and side effects. Getting clean, healthy, ink-free skin is worth the wait.

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