The human body has miraculous self-healing capabilities. Collagen and blood platelets play the main role in this healing. Collagen is the protein responsible for keeping the skin firm by providing structural framework. Platelets are the active healers that repair a wound. What if you could basically trick the body into believing it has been wounded (although the wounds would only be microscopic), so that it initiated the healing mechanisms provided by platelets and increased collagen production?
That’s what we do at Advanced Aesthetic Plastic Surgery with our microneedling combined with platelet-rich plasma.
What is microneedling?
We use the Dermapen for our microneedling. It has 12 very tiny needles that, when moved across the skin, create thousands of microscopic punctures through the epidermis and into the dermis layer of the skin. The depth of needle penetration is varied for the skin condition being treated. The body responds as if it has been wounded/injured by producing new collagen and elastin and sending it to the treatment areas. These proteins rejuvenate the skin by filling fine lines, plumping the skin, improving texture and firmness, and lessening the appearance of scars and stretch marks.
How is microneedling done?
We start our Dermapen microneedling procedures by applying topical anesthetic to the treatment areas. Microneedling is usually done on the face, but is also effective on the neck and chest. Next, we select the needle length based on the skin issue. For instance, when treating acne scars and stretch marks, we select 1.5-2.0 mm needles. For aging skin and wrinkles, we use a 0.5-1.0 mm needle length.
The Dermapen is then moved across the treatment areas, piercing the skin at a 90-degree angle. We use a specific coverage pattern to ensure even penetration, and cover most areas at least twice. The punctures create a channel through the epidermis down into the dermis, but they are microscopic holes surrounded by untouched, healthy tissue. Because of this, the punctures begin to heal immediately and are usually closed within just a couple of hours.
What skin issues can microneedling address?
Because it triggers a wound-healing response, microneedling is very effective on many skin problems. Plus, unlike laser treatments, microneedling can be used on all skin tones without risking hyperpigmentation.
These are conditions we treat with microneedling:
- Fine lines
- Stretch marks
- Acne scars
- Wound scars
- Uneven skin texture
- Pigmentation problems
- Overly large pores
Combining microneedling with platelet-rich plasma
At Advanced Aesthetic Plastic Surgery we also now offer microneedling combined with platelet-rich plasma (PRP). The microneedling enables better penetration of the PRP, so that its numerous growth factors can further rejuvenate the skin.
How long does treatment take and is there recovery?
Microneedling usually takes around 30 minutes, depending on your treatment areas, and the PRP process takes just a few minutes.
After your session, your skin will be red and flushed. The redness will subside over the next day or two. You may have some mild swelling and your face will likely feel a little tight across your treatment areas for a couple of days. But there isn’t really any “recovery” necessary, as you can go right back to your normal activities. Due to the redness, however, you may want to schedule your session after work or toward the day’s end, so that your skin can calm down overnight. Because PRP uses your own blood as its base, there are not any problems with reactions.
When will my results begin to show themselves?
Results from our Dermapen microneedling with PRP aren’t immediate. The body needs some time to begin delivering the new collagen and elastin to the treatment areas. Your results will begin to show themselves in three to four weeks and will continue to build for the next few months.
We find that most of our PRP microneedling patients need three treatments spaced from one to two months apart to see the degree of results they want. This varies by the patient.