Lasers are so much more accurate, safe and precise than they were even a few years ago that more and more people are using them for cosmetic reasons. One of those reasons is skin tightening, which restores some youthful suppleness and vibrancy to skin that has been damaged by the sun, pollutants or simply age. One type of laser used for skin tightening is the NIR, or near infrared laser.
How Does NIR Work?
As its name says, NIR uses infrared light, which people perceive as heat. This type of light can reach into the deeper lasers of the skin where it can access collagen. Collagen is a protein that keeps skin springy.
When the infrared light contacts the collagen, it makes the fibers there draw up and tighten. At the same time, it stimulates the body to make fresh collagen. This renews the skin’s suppleness and reduces sagging. The NIR laser doesn’t affect the other components of the skin. It only affects the collagen.
NIR treatment lasts between a half an hour and 40 minutes. Before the treatment even begins, the patient has a brief consultation with the dermatologist to make sure that they’re a good candidate for the NIR treatment.
At the start of the treatment, the dermatologist places a cooling agent on the skin then passes a handpiece over those areas that need treatment. The skin is heated until it reaches 102.2 to 107.6 degrees Fahrenheit and maintains those temperatures for about 10 minutes.
NIR laser for skin tightening is not painful, though the patient will feel some heat, as if they’re lying in the sun. The handpiece has a system that keeps the top layers of the skin cool.
Some patients are satisfied with one NIR treatment, but most have more than one. They usually have from three to six treatments that are spaced about three weeks apart. How many treatments a patient has depends on the condition of their skin and what results they wish to achieve.
After the Treatment
ANIR treatment is an outpatient procedure, so the patient can resume their schedule soon after a session is over. When they’re home, they may see some redness around the treated areas. This is normal and will go away after a few days. Any swelling will be gone after a day.
The patient will see improvement to their skin that increases over time and peaks about two to three months after their NIR treatment. These results can last as long as two years, and in the meantime the patient can return to their dermatologist for touch-up treatments.
What Can Be Improved Through NIR Laser for Skin Tightening?
NIR laser can correct many problems with the skin, including sagging in the:
- Upper arms
It is also good for softening the look of cellulite, lines and wrinkles in the forehead and crow’s feet.