Also known as dermaplaning or dermablading.
Dermabrasion and dermaplaning (dermablading) are two recently novel ways of treating skin blemishes, wrinkles and acne scars. They have a much shorter recovery time than some of the more invasive procedures like a deep chemical peel or face lift.Your cosmetic surgeon or dermatologist will use a special instrument to deliberately “injure” your skin. This way, a new, smoother layer of skin will grow where this old skin has been removed.
Dermabrasion is not to be confused with microdermabrasion. Microdermabrasion is considered a non-invasive skin resurfacing treatment that gently exfoliates away the top layer of dead skin cells and stimulates collagen growth to produce healthy, smoother looking and feeling skin.
How is it performed?
Dermabrasion intentionally “injures” your skin, which triggers the body’s healing process, forcing good scar tissue to replace bad scar tissue, reducing wrinkles and skin blemishes. Your surgeon or dermatologist will use a small, rapidly spinning wheel with a roughened surface similar to fine-grained sandpaper. They will rub this tool on the skin gently to remove its upper layers.
Dermabrasion is most often used to treat severe facial blemishes like those caused by acne scars and is particularly useful for anyone who has vertical wrinkles (glabellar lines) around the mouth.
Dermabrasion can be performed on the entire face or just a small area of the skin.
Dermaplaning or dermablading is an almost identical process to dermabrasion, apart from a difference in the tool your plastic surgeon will use. For this treatment, the surgeon uses a tool known as a dermatome, which looks pretty similar to an electric razor. The difference between a dermatome and a dermabrader is that instead of a sandpaper-like surface, the tool uses several small blades to skim off the upper layers of the skin.
This may be a better option for those with much deeper wrinkles or acne scars on the face. Like dermabrasion it can be performed on the entire face or a single area.
Is it right for me?
There are virtually no age restrictions for dermabrasion or dermablading, as long as you are in good general health, have a positive mental attitude and realistic expectations then you will probably be a good candidate for this procedure.
What result can I expect?
Dermabrading/dermaplaning will reduce your skin blemishes and may even eliminate them for a relatively long time following the procedure, depending on the technique and duration of your treatment. You should remember that your skin will continue to age as normal, so new blemishes may appear over time. You can ask your cosmetic surgeon to give you an idea of how long your results will last. For your safety, as well as ensuring the most beautiful and healthy outcome for you, it’s important to return to your cosmetic surgeon’s office for follow ups when instructed or if you notice any changes to your skin. Do not hesitate to contact your surgeon when you have any questions or concerns.
- Less invasive than a facelift
- Improved look of scars, wrinkles and skin spots
- Can achieve more intensive results than microdermabrasion and light chemical peels
- Can cause skin irritation or scarring
- Skin colour may change
- Sun sensitivity after treatment
The treated area will probably be red and swollen after treatment and will probably feel similar to when you have grazed your knee. You may experience tingling and scabbing in the treated area. Your cosmetic doctor may sometimes prescribe you a cream or ointment to help reduce any pain and they will instruct you on how to best treat your skin. Overall, care for the area is similar to treatment for a mild burn. You will likely experience some pain once the anaesthesia has worn off but if this is extreme or long-lasting you should immediately contact your physician.
It usually takes around 7 to 10 days for new skin to form in the treatment area, but your skin may continue to have a red or pinkish hue for up to a month after. This skin colouration can typically be covered up with light makeup. Within six weeks of surgery, any swelling or redness will subside and you’ll be able to see the results of your treatment. Immediately after the procedure you may have to avoid any strenuous activity or heavy lifting..
Deeper treatments may require you to take a break from normal activity for between one and two weeks. Lighter, superficial treatments will take much less time to recover from. You should follow all patient care instructions carefully. Your surgeon will also provide detailed instructions about the normal symptoms and how to spot any signs of complications. It is important to realize everyone’s body is different and so the amount of time it takes to recover varies between individuals.
Limits & Risks
Fortunately, significant complications from dermabrasion are infrequent. Your specific risks for these procedures will be discussed during your consultation.