Body hairs have their own life cycle, even if we do not realize it, the hairs are born, grows and then dies off. These 3 periods of the life of the hair are respectively called anagen, catagen, and telogen.
In the Anagen phase inside the hair bulb, new cells are formed, the melanocytes, which will constitute the hair at a speed of about 1 cm a month.
In the Catagen phase, which follows the Anagen phase, the hair follicle narrows and the hair bulb separates from the dermal papilla which nourishes it. The hair can remain anchored to the follicle, but it quickly falls with light rubbing caused for example by washing and drying.
In the last phase, the Telogen, the hair definitively ends its growth but remains attached to the hair follicle. The latter continues to shrink, the hair bulb is further distanced from the dermal papilla, and the hair can fall. Once this phase is over, the hair follicle returns to the Anagen phase. A new hair is then formed.
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When the pulsed light is effective
Intense Pulsed Light or IPL treatment is effective as long as it affects the hair bulb in the hair growth phase, the Anagen phase. This is because the effectiveness of the treatment depends on the amount of light energy absorbed by the melanin, which is the substance that gives the dark color to the hair. In the Anagen phase, there is a lot of melanin inside the hair bulb, so more energy will be absorbed, and the bulb will be destroyed.
Advantages of pulsed light compared to other treatments for permanent hair removal
The wavelength adapts to the melanin content of the target, the hair, and the surrounding tissues. Pulsed light is selectively distributed to the hair follicle without damaging the epidermis.
By increasing the temperature and inducing heat in the hair follicle, part of the IPL energy is absorbed by the melanin pigment in the hair and another part, penetrating into the dermis, is directly absorbed by the dermal papilla. This specific and peculiar synergy of intense pulsed light can damage most of the cells responsible for hair growth. Once destroyed, the hair and its hair follicle are eliminated through a physiological process with the result of long-term hair removal.
Number and frequency of seating
The number of sessions varies from 5 to 8, with time intervals of one month for the first 2 sessions and about 2 months for the following ones. With this protocol generally permanent depilation of 99% of the treated area is obtained. One or two booster sessions each year is recommended.
Do not expose yourself to prolonged solar radiation or UV lamps so that the skin is not tanned at the time of treatment. Do not take vitamins A and K or antibiotics.
Do not expose yourself to the sun or UV lamps if even slight erythema has occurred, until its disappearance. If necessary, apply soothing creams or gels. Do not show up for the epilation session after removing hair with wax. If necessary, remove them using the razor.
Mild side effects may occur, such as moderate erythema of the treated area, accompanied by a slight burning sensation. More rarely, persistent edema occurs with or without the appearance of small blisters. Even less frequently there are areas of hyper or hypopigmentation, which generally undergo spontaneous resolution within a few months.
The results are always satisfactory for the patient. After each session, 10-20% of the hairs present are generally eliminated. The hairs that remain will, however, have a slower re-growth and will appear progressively thinner and thinner. However, the extent of the results depends on numerous factors such as the color of the hair itself and the skin as well as the number of hairs and their consistency.
Laser and intense pulsed light therapies Cost in India
Laser and IPL treatments for dermatology are available widely in skin care clinics across India. The cost depends on the area being treated. The average price of a sitting varies between INR 2,000 to 4,500 or USD 35 to 63. NdYAG type laser is a more expensive treatment using the same principles and costs between INR 5,000 and 9,000 or USD 70 and 125 per session. NdYAG produces fewer burns and irritation.
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