What is ClearScan™ for Laser Permanent Hair Reduction?
ClearScan™ is a noninvasive laser treatment for unwanted hair that selectively emits a beam of light that is highly absorbed in melanin, a component within the follicle that gives hair its color, while at the same time sparing melanin in the skin. For this reason, ClearScan™ is comfortable, safe and effective for all skin colors and even sun tanned skin, making it the treatment of choice for unwanted body hair.
What other non laser & light-based treatments are available?
Waxing, shaving, and the use of depilatory creams are well-established methods for hair reduction, albeit temporary. Electrolysis is the traditional tried and tested method for permanent hair reduction. However, it is often very time-consuming, painful, and not without complications. With rapid technology development, the most popular and effective method for hair reduction is the use of lasers or intense pulsed light, which are designed to damage and destroy hair in a brief period of time with reduced side effects. People are interested in laser or light hair reduction because the end results are consistent and predictable within a reasonable time frame that fits their lifestyle.
What is laser hair reduction? How does it work?
Hair grows in three stages, and when hair is in the anagen stage (growth) it is most vulnerable to laser treatment. ClearScan™ technology selectively heats the full length of the imbedded hair follicle cutting off its supply of nutrients, thus disabling its growth. Because hair is not always in the anagen stage at one time, multiple treatments must be given over a period of time to treat it while it is in the anagen stage. Your clinician will design a treatment series to reflect your desire for hair reduction in particular body locations.
Can all skin colors and tanned skin be treated?
Yes, all skin colors from light to dark can be treated, as well as safely treating tanned skin. Nevertheless, always inform your clinician if you have been tanning, using tanning products, or have experienced prolonged exposure to the sun within the last three weeks. Your clinician will then adjust your treatment regimen accordingly to give you the safest and most effective experience.
What happens during hair reduction treatment? Will it be uncomfortable?
The procedure is gentle, noninvasive and typically comfortable. The area of your skin that is to be treated will be scanned with laser light. Treatment time will depend on the size of the area to be treated. The continuous cooling feature of the ClearScan™ will ensure your comfort and safety during treatment. Generally, there is no need for a topical anesthetic. However, your clinician may choose to use it on more sensitive areas. Laser hair reduction works best when the hair is one to two millimeters in length, so your clinician may ask you to shave or trim the area before your treatment.
Why ClearScan™ for hair reduction?
The ClearScan™ laser selectively targets your hair follicles and heats them with infrared energy. Unlike other processes, the laser beam treats many hairs at once making treatment of large areas practical. The ClearScan™ employs a unique computer guided scanning system that automates the treatment ensuring that your skin is rapidly and evenly treated. The computer sets the parameters and places the beam in an optimum pattern for your skin. With ClearScan™, you will have a safe, fast, and effective treatment.
What should I expect after treatment?
Some redness, tenderness and slight follicular swelling may be present in the area that has been treated but this should subside within a few hours. If any prolonged redness or swelling occurs, please consult your clinician immediately. Keep the treated area clean, use a sun block with a minimum SPF of 30 and keep the treated area covered and protected from the sun.
Is there a risk for complications?
Temporary pigmentation changes are possible but seldom occur. Always discuss your concerns with your clinician prior to treatment.
Can pseudofolliculitis barbae (in-grown hair) be treated?
Yes. Pseudofolliculitis is a type of chronic disorder caused by ingrown coarse or curly hairs. This disorder primarily affects darker skin types and the infrared energy which is delivered by ClearScan™ is the preferred method of treatment.
Is treatment permanent?
Typically, each laser treatment will be associated with some permanent hair loss. Therefore, in most cases, hair reduction can only be achieved after several treatments. The number of treatments will depend on each patient’s individual response to the laser hair reduction treatment and the amount of hair to be removed. Remember that the goal may not be total hair removal. Many patients are happy with a reasonable degree of hair reduction. Also, the hair that remains is often lighter in color and thinner than the original hair prior to laser hair reduction treatment. As with other treatments for unwanted hair, there is no guarantee that laser hair reduction treatment will be permanent.
How many treatments will I need?
As previously mentioned, hair grows in three different stages. Hair can only be affected by laser energy when it is in its anagen stage. Additionally, hair located on different body parts has different growth cycles and percentages of anagen hair at any one given time. Due to this physiology, a series of treatments must be given over a period of time, usually 4-8 weeks apart to address the function of the hair.
Does treatment hurt?
Most patients describe laser hair reduction as feeling “prickly,” or like the light snap of a rubber band against the skin. Afterwards, it might feel like sunburn. Each patient has his or her own level of skin sensitivity and pain threshold. Different areas on the body are also more sensitive than others. On the day of your treatment, plan on wearing clothing that will allow easy access to the area being treated. You may not need any type of anesthesia for your treatments.
Will my insurance coverage treatment?
Unwanted hair is usually a cosmetic issue, so in most cases you should expect to pay for treatment. In the rare instances where treatment is considered medically necessary, insurance may cover the cost of treatment. It’s best to speak to your clinician and your insurance company to clarify this question.