Life takes its toll on our bodies — including our skin. Sun exposure, natural changes as we age, acne and more can wreak havoc on our appearance, leaving us wondering what happened to the smooth, clear complexion of our younger years. The good news is microneedling can provide a refresh that rejuvenates the skin naturally.
At the Ventura Institute for Dermatologic Arts in Ventura and Camarillo, California, Dr. Peter Karlsberg and Michele Ayans, his physician’s assistant, provide a wide range of state-of-the-art treatments including microneedling. We combine art and science along with open communication to create a personalized care plan to help you look your best.
It’s easy to think our skin is invincible as it protects our body from the environment, but it can still be affected by many things. Ultraviolet radiation from the sun and tanning beds can lead to fine lines and wrinkles. Sun damage can also result in sagging skin, dark spots, and uneven pigmentation. Acne occurs when oil and dead skin cells clog hair follicles and can cause scarring. Stretch marks may develop when the skin gets extended during times of rapid growth, gaining or losing weight, or pregnancy.
Microneedling is a minimally invasive cosmetic procedure that takes advantage of the body’s regeneration processes to naturally rejuvenate the skin. A specially-designed device makes thin pinpricks using tiny sterilized needles. This, in turn, encourages the body to create new collagen and skin tissue.
For people who want an even more powerful treatment tool, adding topical insulin to the procedure has been shown recently to improve results, giving an added boost without any additional side effects.
Not all microneedling treatments are equal: the depth of treatment and the number of “passes” applied to the skin impact the effectiveness of treatment and the number of treatments required, as does the use of topical insulin. There are some over-the-counter microneedling devices that barely penetrate the skin and produce little or no benefit, no matter how many treatments are used.
Issues microneedling can help
Microneedling and its skin rejuvenation can assist with a variety of skin concerns including the following:
- Fine lines
- Sun damage
- Acne scars
- Stretch marks
Microneedling has a number of benefits. The procedure has very little discomfort or downtime. Typically the skin is pink for 2 to 4 days, and makeup can be applied after 24 hours. Improvement in the appearance can be seen over a period of weeks as new collagen is generated. This helps the skin appear younger with fewer wrinkles, as well as smoother and clearer with less noticeable acne scars and other imperfections. A series of at least 3 treatments is generally required to achieve about 50% improvement in wrinkles, scars and stretch marks.
Microneedling cannot improve moderate to severe wrinkles, however. In such cases, fractional laser resurfacing, botox and fillers may be more appropriate and cost-effective. Microneedling is not the best treatment modality for blotchy discoloration of the skin, where the Fraxel Restore Dual laser and medium depth chemical peels are more effective. At your initial consultation, Dr. Karlsberg and Michele Ayans, PA-C will recommend a specific treatment plan that targets your concerns most effectively. Microneedling is just one of many tools they use, depending on your needs.