A tattoo represents a lot of reasons, sentiments and often has great emotional value to the wearer apart from its aesthetics. Few people however foresee that they might want it removed at some time or the other. It all starts with a passion that promises to feel good for life but a variety of reasons might force the wearer to change his/her mind. Love might have failed and a name might have to be removed. Employers often frown down upon job applicants who brazenly flaunt their tattoos.
In the past, a tattoo removal decision entailed going through a very painful process including extensive invasive surgeries, skin grafts or going under infra-red lasers. It also meant significant side effects and prolonged recuperation periods. However, the modern methodology of laser assisted tattoo removal has revolutionised the procedure making it relatively painless and without any side effects.
Here then is a LED PDT complete guide to tattoo removal.
- How do laser tattoo removal work – State of the art laser and IPL machines are used for tattoo removal by dermatologists the world over. Light beams pulsing at nanoseconds are directed on the tattoo. These enter the skin layer and are absorbed by the dark pigment mass or tattoo ink. Light energy breaks up the ink into tiny fragments which are then safely removed by the body’s immune system. The laser is a concentrated beam of light that targets the tattoo ink only without affecting the skin surrounding the tattoo.
- Effective tattoo removal – The effectiveness of tattoo removal apart from the quality of equipment depends a lot on the professional expertise of the dermatologist. This because a lot of variables are involved here. The use of a specific laser will depend on the location and colour of the tattoo. For instance, one type of laser will be used to treat say the reds and the blacks while another will be used for eliminating the blues and the greens.
- Time for complete tattoo removal – A number of sessions are required for complete tattoo removal typically between 3 to 10 depending on the size of the tattoo, its primary colours, density and complexity of design and location. Other aspects include skin colour, the type of ink used and the ability of the skin to heal after each session which is on an average 4 to 6 weeks. Another very crucial aspect is the quality of tattoo removal devices. Optimised and quick procedures are possible when machines with the latest cutting edge laser technologies are used. For example, machines imported and distributed by Universal IPL in Australia are sourced from leading manufacturers around the world and hence can guarantee quick and effective treatments.
- Tattoos that are difficult to remove – Certain tattoos are more difficult to remove than others. Tattoos etched in purple, brown, light orange and light blue are generally more difficult to remove than the others and can even turn a darker shade after treatment. Hence it is always recommended that the dermatologist carry out a test spot before starting the process. Again tattoos are more difficult to remove from those with darker skin tones than with fair skin.
Whatever the type of tattoo or the quality of the equipment might be, the effectiveness of tattoo removal rests largely on the experience and expertise of the dermatologist.