September 10, 2020

Are you considering micro-needling treatment to manage your acne scars, hair loss, or stretch marks? Perhaps you’ve tried other ways and seen no results. And you’re thinking, micro-needling could be the key to getting that smooth and radiant skin.  

Microneedling is one of the most effective procedures today. Before you go ahead, here is what you need to know about it.


Micro-needling Definition

So, what is micro-needling? Micro-needling, also referred to as Rejuvapen or Dermapen, is a cosmetic non-surgical procedure that induces collagen (a protein the skin produces to increase strength and elasticity) production.

The process involves pricking the skin with needles with a skin pen device to create slight skin injuries. This act encourages the skin to produce the collagen-rich tissue, which makes the skin smoother and firmer. 


How Microneedling Works

Microneedling therapy is designed to help the skin heal itself by causing slight injuries, promoting skin rejuvenation. The skin therapist uses FDA-approved handheld needles to prick your skin, causing small punctures on the outer layer. This stimulates collagen and elastin production.

The micro-needling equipment consists of 11 super tiny-needles. The doctors use the tip, whose length can adjust between 0.5 and 2.5 millimeters, to perform the micro-needling procedure. The needle is used to penetrate the layer of the skin around the affected region.

This procedure is useful because your body treats all wounds the same way, whether small or big. That means the tiny prickles created in the skin causes the body to send fibroblasts that result in more collagen production in the affected area.

In essence, the skin is being tricked into thinking that it has been wounded, and it needs to send it “rescue team” to that particular body part. The result of the procedure is that the skin thickens, and its texture improves. Also, it reduces skin pores sizes, making the skin appear lifted, plump, and taut.


How to Prepare for Micro-needling

Before the micro-needling procedure, consult with your doctor on how best to prepare. Some doctors may recommend that you stop taking certain medications like ibuprofen or other acne treatment medications before the procedure.

Also, the physician may ask you to stop using other topical retinoids in advance. This helps minimize specific side effects. The doctor will also examine your skin to determine if you’re the right candidate for the procedure. You’ll then be advised on what to expect, what to do before and after micro-needling and the aftercare.

Micro-needling Procedure: How it’s Done

The micro-needling procedure involves making small pricks under the scarred skin with the pen-like tool. Your doctor moves the needle in a circular motion evenly across the skin, and thus the results will also be even. The pinpricks are slight that you will not even notice them with your naked eyes after the procedure.

An hour or so, before the procedure begins, the physician cleanses and numbs the affected area. This helps make the process pain-free. Some doctors don’t use anesthesia to numb the skin. So ask your physician if they do before the procedure starts. The doctor also applies a serum that helps promote skin repair and healing.

After completing the procedure, another layer of serum may be applied, and a mask is placed on the skin to seal the area. The process takes approximately 30 minutes. In simple terms, you can expect to be out and about in a couple of hours. The procedure has no downtime, so that means you can get back to work as soon as possible.


Micro-needling Benefits

The micro-needling procedure helps the skin rejuvenate. It is the ideal treatment for treating different types of scars and wrinkles. 

Types of Conditions that micro-needling Treats

Micro-needling treats different conditions facial conditions as well as other skin issues. The treatment is safe for people who want to treat sensitive and fragile body parts like the eyebrows, the back of the hands, or the skin around the neck. The conditions to target with this treatment include:

Micro-needling is a procedure that can be done anywhere on the skin to stimulate a collagen boost and is safe for all skin types and colors. The treatment helps smooth out scabs, clear bumps, or fill in the skin dents.


Who Should Avoid Micro-needling Treatment?

Before going for the treatment, make sure that you don’t have any skin infection like herpes simplex or inflamed areas on your skin. In case you have a cystic breakout, wait for it to clear up first before you book that appointment.

You must be not have used isotretinoin (Accutane) in the past three or so months to be the right candidate for micro-needling. It is also not suitable for people with open wounds, cuts, or abrasions, or those who have had radiation skin treatment within the past twelve months. 

Also, you shouldn’t be either pregnant or nursing.  You shouldn’t have a history of keloid or hypertrophic scars or poor wound healing.

Microneedling is also not safe for people with rosacea, eczema, and other sensitive skin conditions. You also need to skip the procedure if you’re using blood-thinners or a frequent alcohol drinker, as it may cause dehydration and render the treatment ineffective.


How much does Micro-needling Cost?

Micro-needling costs between $100 and $700 per session, according to Dermapen research. The cost of treatment depends on several factors, such as the size of the affected area(s), the number of the affected area(s), and any additional treatments required. 

During the initial consultation, the doctor will assess your aesthetic goals and how healthy the skin is currently to offer an accurate cost estimation or quote. For optimum results, you need to do more than one session. The number of sessions depends on the severity of the tissue you want to fix. 

For example, if you have fair skin but want to improve, then doing every three to six months is sufficient. But, if you have a very severe case of acne, then you should plan for a session every month for the first four to six months and then once every three months. Then, plan to go for touch-ups once a year. When fixing other body parts, you can expect to go for around four to six sessions.

Most aesthetic and cosmetic procedures are not covered by insurance, so micro-needling treatment may not have a cover. You can talk with your aesthetician to structure a reasonable payment plan for you. Some practices offer other forms of financing, and so you can consult about it.

Perform a cumulative cost estimate before you commit. You don’t want your finances to disappoint or get surprise bills along the way.


How to Find a Professional Practitioner for Micro-needling Procedure

To get the best physician, you need to do your homework. Search the internet, ask around, or find good recommendations from friends and family.

You don’t want to end up in the hands of an amateur. So ensure that the practitioner is licensed and has a micro-needling certification. Check whether their licenses are up to date before you book an appointment.

Ask your doctor a fair share of questions to be sure that you’re in the right hands. Also, ensure that they use the right kind and sterilized equipment.

Get them to tell you if they numb during the procedure, whether they use a serum and a mask, and aftercare provisions. Knowing all these will ensure that you get the best doctor.


Does Micro-needling hurt?

When some people hear about needles, they curl in fear. Well, there is nothing to worry about. This piercing should not be painful.

Most doctors use a numbing cream to minimize any pain. After the procedure, you can expect to feel a little bit of tightness like sunburn. Your skin will appear a bit pinkish or reddish, and in a worst-case, a few and tiny punctate scabs may crop up, but they’ll quickly fade in no time.


Micro-needling After Care

Doctors recommend using a chemical-free sunscreen with a broad spectrum of at least SPF of 30 when going out in the sun. This should be a few weeks after the treatment.

Also, you should avoid skincare products with retinol and acids, such as salicylic and glycolic. Always keep the skin well hydrated by applying a moisturizer and taking lots of fluids. You may use a mild cleanser or serum and avoid exfoliating scrubs days after treatment.

Try to keep off makeup too for the rest of the day after treatment. But you can use it at night if you have got an appointment.


Micro-needling at Home

Home rollers and devices have shorter needles and do not fully penetrate the skin. That means that though they are safe to use, they aren’t as effective as the one you get from your derm.

Doctors do not recommend using the at-home dermarollers because of the high risk of infection. However, if you want to go ahead with the at-home treatment, its recommended that you thoroughly cleanse the skin before and apply serum over the top.


Micro-needling Results

Initial results may appear immediately after the first treatment is complete. However, the most dramatic results will start to show after a few sessions or four to six weeks after treatment. 

For burn scars, it can take up to six months or a year. And in the case of cellular turnover or tissue rejuvenation, the results can show in as little as two weeks.


Micro-needling Side Effects

Just like any other procedure, micro-needling has several side effects. The most common is skin irritation. Also, the skin may appear reddish or pinkish after the treatment. 

Other severe side effects include bruising, bleeding, peeling, or infection. If you notice these kinds of side effects, seek medical advice immediately.