Amidst the popularity of Botox and facelifts, there’s a new treatment in the world of anti-aging—microneedling. In our quest to fight the battle against aging, microneedling comes with the promise of youthful skin in as little as 3 to 6 sessions.
During the procedure, fine needles perform a controlled skin injury to reveal younger-looking skin. While this treatment has only gained popularity in recent years, it is not brand new. Experts in the field of dermatology have been performing this skin treatment for over 20 years, so it has been tried, tested, and deemed safe and effective. Aside from being administered on the face, microneedle therapy can also be performed on the arms, legs, abdomen, neck, and other body parts in need of a little pick-me-up.
Although this remedy is most commonly known as microneedling, it is also referred to as Collagen Induction Therapy (CIT) or Percutaneous Collagen Induction (PCI) because it helps stimulate collagen growth.
Microneedling: The Procedure
First, we apply an anesthetic cream along with a light layer of water to lubricate the skin’s surface. The water will make gliding the derma roller a lot easier. The roller will create small holes or micro-injuries to help reveal youthful skin. Each session lasts around 30 minutes. It is important to not use any skin care products for 24 hours since needling boosts absorption.
The treatment causes skin redness, so please allow a few days for the skin to heal. The results will be apparent a few days after that. The collagen production that microneedle therapy stimulates happens in a span of weeks or months, so expect more changes over time.
While this procedure is not a quick fix, your skin will look better long-term.
You will also need several treatments and the number of sessions will depend on your goals. This will be somewhere between three to six sessions to get the best results. If you want to get rid of stretch marks, wrinkles, and scarring, we usually suggest six or more sessions.
Is Microneedling Right for You?
Microneedling improves the condition of the skin in all facets. While it is a popular treatment for anti-aging, including removing fine lines and wrinkles, it is also an excellent choice for clearing up acne scarring. It can also improve loose skin and uneven skin texture, reduce pore size, and eliminate dark spots, stretch marks, and unnatural pigmentation.
Who is a good candidate for microneedling? While the procedure is fairly noninvasive, it is always important to discuss treatment options with your dermatologist. He or she will be able to go over the details of the treatment and determine whether it is the best solution for your skin type and desired outcome. There are several factors to consider before choosing microneedling.
If you have any active infections or lesions, this treatment will irritate the affected area and cause more inflammation. We also discourage microneedling for individuals with active acne since the procedure can potentially spread bacteria and cause a larger breakout.
If you don’t like needles, you can ask your dermatologist if there are treatments that offer similar results. For some, the prickling sensation is too much even if the specialist applies a topical anesthesia. If you have a low tolerance for pain, stay away from this particular procedure. However, if you don’t mind mild stings, microneedle therapy is a great way improve the texture and pigment of your skin.
Don’t Try Microneedling at Home
At-home derma rollers have caused an increase in the popularity of microneedling. However, we warn patients that microneedling at home can lead to wounds and scarring. This treatment is definitely beneficial and can improve dull skin, but doing it yourself is risky.
While the treatment is also available at spas, this presents a risk as well. A 2014 study, “Facial Allergic Granulomatous Reaction and Systemic Hypersensitivity Associated with Microneedle Therapy for Skin Rejuvenation” reveals that Micro-Needle therapy not performed by a licensed dermatologist can cause adverse allergic reactions. It is important that a trained professional perform this treatment to ensure you are not putting your skin at risk.