Developed almost 25 years ago, microneedling has reached new levels of popularity due to its effectiveness in treating various skin concerns. In an era of show-and-tell skin treatments, its social media following Certified Physician Assistant, Michael Housley, tells us all about this highly sought-after skin resurfacing procedure.
Q: What does it treat?
A: Microneedling is used to treat many skin–texture issues, including acne, surgery scars and other scars, large pores, wrinkles, and uneven pigmentation caused by the sun and hormone changes (such as melasma). It is commonly used on the face but can also be used to treat sagging skin in areas such as the neck or other areas of the body for things like stretch marks.
Q: How does it work?
A: The microneedling treatments that dermatology practices perform involve creating thousands of micro-injuries (channels) that stimulate collagen production. This is done with a device that pierces the skin and triggers the immune system to begin creating new tissue. These tiny, controlled injuries trigger the skin to build new cells and eventually be replaced by new dermal tissues and blood vessels. The treatment is highly sought-after due to its effectiveness, little downtime, natural and versatile approach (no chemicals, heat, or toxins to paralyze your muscles or remove layers of skin), and its clinical effectiveness on all skin types, Fitzpatrick 1-6.
What is the difference between Cosmetic Microneedling and Medical Microneedling?
A: Medical Microneedling must be performed by trained professionals and Medical Providers. Cosmetic Microneedling can be done at home because the needles penetrate at a shallow level – the needles are less than 0.5mm long. As a result, Cosmetic Microneedling is much less effective, whereas Medical Microneedling penetrates deep into the skin to reduce the appearance of scars and fine lines and to correct hyperpigmentation and melasma. “We use Crown Aesthetics’ SkinPen®, the first FDA-cleared microneedling in the market. I like working with SkinPen because it is best-in-class technology for microneedling and its sterile, disposable needle cartridges reduce the risk of cross-contamination.”
Q: Does it hurt?
A: Microneedling isn’t painful for most people, and to avoid any discomfort, a topical numbing agent is used.
Q: Is there downtime?
A: Not usually. Some patients experience minimal downtime, which is why it’s so popular for those with busy schedules. There may be some redness, swelling, or dryness following the procedure.
Q: Does it really work?
A: Yes. Typical results are a noticeable tightening of the skin within a week or two and improvement of scars and pigmentation after a couple treatments. I love seeing my patients’ skin glow after their treatments are completed.
Q: Can anyone get microneedling?
A: Yes, it is approved for all skin types, but if there are active acne lesions or infections, those areas will be avoided during the treatment. This is a common treatment to reduce the appearance of scars after taking a course of isotretinoin (aka Accutane) and patients should wait three to six months after completing the medication to do the SkinPen treatments.
Your Boise Dermatology experts combine market-leading skin and patient care with the most advanced technology.