After ablative laser resurfacing, your skin might stay red or pink for up to several months. However, once the treatment area begins to heal, you'll notice an immediate difference in your skin quality and appearance. The effects can last for years.
Results after nonablative laser resurfacing tend to be gradual and progressive, rather than immediate and dramatic. You're more likely to notice improvements in skin texture and pigment than in wrinkles.
After laser resurfacing, avoid unprotected sun exposure for one year to prevent irregular pigmentation. Keep in mind that your results might not be permanent, since as you age you'll continue to acquire lines by squinting and smiling. New sun damage also can reverse your results.
Aug. 15, 2017
- Goldsmith LA, et al., eds. Ablative lasers, chemical peels, and dermabrasion. In: Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 8th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed Dec. 20, 2016.
- Laser therapy. American Society for Dermatologic Surgery. http://www.asds.net/LaserResurfacingInformation.aspx. Accessed Dec. 20, 2016.
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- Casey WJ (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 8, 2017.