Laser Milia Removal London UK
Laser milia removal is a modern cosmetic procedure designed to treat milia, which are small, white bumps that commonly appear on the skin. These bumps are typically found around the nose, cheeks, and eyes and are caused by keratin getting trapped beneath the skin’s surface. Unlike acne, milia are not painful or harmful, but many people choose to remove them for aesthetic reasons.
The process of laser milia removal involves the use of focused light beams to precisely target and eliminate the milia. This method is highly effective and offers a quick solution with minimal discomfort. The laser’s energy is absorbed by the pigments in the milia, causing them to break down and be naturally absorbed by the body. This technique is particularly advantageous as it minimises the risk of scarring and infection, which can be a concern with other removal methods such as extraction or topical treatments.
One of the significant benefits of laser milia removal is its precision. The laser can target individual milia without affecting the surrounding skin, making it an ideal choice for those with sensitive skin or for treating milia in delicate areas like around the eyes. The procedure is relatively quick, usually completed in a single session, and requires little to no downtime, allowing patients to return to their daily activities almost immediately.
It’s important to note that while laser milia removal is generally safe, it’s crucial to have it performed by qualified professionals at Centre for Surgery. We can evaluate your skin type and condition to ensure that the treatment is suitable for you. Additionally, we can provide guidance on post-treatment care to ensure the best possible results.
What are Milia?
What Causes Milia?
The development of milia can be attributed to various factors, and understanding these causes is essential for effective management and prevention.
- Skin Renewal Process: One of the primary causes of milia is related to the skin’s natural exfoliation process. When dead skin cells are not effectively shed, they can accumulate and get trapped under the skin, forming milia. This is particularly common in skin types that have a slower natural exfoliation process.
- Use of Heavy Skincare Products: The use of certain skincare products, especially those that are heavy or oil-based, can lead to the development of milia. These products can clog the pores and trap keratin underneath the skin.
- Sun Damage: Prolonged exposure to the sun can damage the skin, leading to the thickening of the outer layers. This thickening can impede the skin’s ability to exfoliate dead skin cells properly, resulting in milia formation.
- Skin Trauma or Injury: Any form of skin trauma, such as blistering injuries, burns, or certain types of skin treatments, can lead to the development of milia. These conditions can cause a disruption in the skin’s natural exfoliation process.
- Genetic Factors: Some individuals may have a genetic predisposition to developing milia, making them more likely to experience these skin cysts regardless of their skincare routine or lifestyle.
- Newborns’ Skin Maturity: In newborns, milia can occur due to the skin’s immaturity. As their skin is still developing, it can be less effective in exfoliating dead skin cells, leading to milia. This type of milia is usually temporary and clears up on its own.
Benefits of Milia Removal Using the Fotona Erbium YAG Laser
Milia removal with the Fotona Erbium YAG laser represents a significant advancement in dermatological treatments. This state-of-the-art laser technology offers numerous benefits for effectively and safely removing milia. Understanding these advantages can help individuals decide if this treatment is suitable for their needs.
- Precision and Safety: The Fotona Erbium YAG laser is renowned for its precision. It targets only the milia cysts, leaving the surrounding skin untouched. This precision minimises the risk of damage to adjacent tissues, making the procedure safer and more comfortable for patients.
- Minimal Discomfort: The procedure is generally well-tolerated by patients. The laser’s accuracy and the non-invasive nature of the treatment contribute to a reduction in discomfort both during and after the procedure.
- No Scarring: One of the significant advantages of using the Fotona Erbium YAG laser for milia removal is the minimal risk of scarring. The laser’s ability to precisely target milia means that there is less likelihood of scarring compared to other removal methods.
- Quick and Efficient: The treatment sessions are usually short, often taking just a few minutes, depending on the number of milia to be treated. This efficiency makes it a convenient option for people with busy schedules.
- Suitable for Sensitive Areas: The precision of the Fotona Erbium YAG laser makes it suitable for treating milia in sensitive and hard-to-reach areas, such as around the eyes.
- Minimal Downtime: Patients can typically return to their normal activities immediately following the procedure. There is little to no downtime required, which is a significant advantage for those concerned about recovery periods.
- Long-lasting Results: The results of milia removal with the Fotona Erbium YAG laser are usually long-lasting. Once the milia are removed, they typically do not recur in the treated area.
- Improved Skin Appearance: Beyond removing milia, the laser treatment can also contribute to a general improvement in skin texture and appearance, giving a more youthful and refreshed look.
- Customisable Treatment: The settings of the Fotona Erbium YAG laser can be adjusted to suit individual skin types and conditions, ensuring a personalised treatment plan for each patient.
Am I suitable for Laser Milia Removal?
To determine if you are suitable for laser milia removal, it’s important to consult with a skincare specialist at Centre for Surgery. They will assess several factors to ensure that this treatment is appropriate for you. Here are some considerations they might take into account:
- Skin Type and Condition: Your skin type and any existing skin conditions will be evaluated. The laser treatment may not be suitable for all skin types, especially those that are highly sensitive or prone to scarring.
- Medical History: Any relevant medical history, including skin-related conditions, allergies, and previous skin treatments, will be considered to ensure the safety and efficacy of the laser treatment.
- Current Medications: Some medications, particularly those affecting skin sensitivity or healing, may impact your suitability for laser treatment.
- Extent and Location of Milia: The number, size, and location of milia will be assessed. Laser treatment is highly effective for milia in certain areas, like around the eyes, but may not be the best choice for all cases.
- Skin Goals and Expectations: The specialist will discuss your expectations and cosmetic goals to determine if laser treatment aligns with your desired outcomes.
- Age and Lifestyle Factors: Age, lifestyle, and factors such as sun exposure habits can influence both the treatment’s effectiveness and the healing process.
- Previous Responses to Skin Treatments: If you’ve had similar treatments in the past, your response to those can provide insight into how well you might tolerate and benefit from laser treatment.
Laser Milia Removal procedure - step by step
Laser milia removal is a precise, minimally invasive procedure often chosen for its efficiency and effectiveness. Here’s a detailed step-by-step overview of what you can typically expect during this procedure:
- Initial Consultation: The process begins with a consultation with trained skincare specialist at our Baker Street clinic. During this meeting, they will assess your skin, discuss your medical history, and determine if laser milia removal is suitable for you.
- Pre-Treatment Instructions: Before the procedure, you may be given specific instructions to prepare your skin. This might include avoiding certain skincare products, sun exposure, or medications that could affect the treatment outcome.
- Arrival at the Clinic: On the day of the procedure, you’ll arrive at the clinic. It’s recommended to come with clean skin, free of makeup or lotions.
- Skin Cleansing: The treatment area will be thoroughly cleansed to remove any oils, dirt, or makeup, ensuring a clean surface for the laser treatment.
- Application of a Numbing Agent: Although the procedure is not particularly painful, a topical numbing agent might be applied to the area to minimise discomfort. This is especially common if milia are located in sensitive areas, like around the eyes.
- Laser Treatment: The laser practitioner will use the laser to target and treat each milium. The laser emits a focused beam of light that penetrates the skin and is absorbed by the milia, causing them to break down. The process is quick, often taking only a few minutes, depending on the number of milia.
- Post-Treatment Care Instructions: After the procedure, you’ll receive guidance on how to care for your skin. This may include using specific skincare products, avoiding sun exposure, and tips to promote healing.
- Observation of Results: The results of the treatment are typically visible immediately, though full healing may take a few days. The treated area might appear slightly red or swollen initially, but this usually subsides quickly.
- Follow-up Appointments: In some cases, a follow-up appointment may be necessary to assess the healing process and ensure the desired results have been achieved.
- Long-Term Care and Prevention: Your specialist may also provide advice on long-term skin care to prevent the recurrence of milia and maintain healthy skin.
Laser Milia Removal in London: Choose Centre for Surgery for Expert Care
What are the causes of Milia?Milia cysts are most commonly caused by injury or damage to the skin in both adults and adolescents. There are a number of recognised causes of injury or damage to the skin which can lead to the formation of milia:
- Chronic sun damage
- Laser resurfacing (CO2 laser)
- Chronic sun damage
- Bullous skin conditions including pemphigoid, porphyria cutanea tarda or epidermolysis bullosa
Certain components of commonly used skincare products and make up can lead to the formation of milia in younger people. People who are prone to developing milia cysts are recommended to avoid the following products:
- Paraffin oil
- Paraffin liquid
- Petrolatum liquid
- Petroleum oil
- Liquid paraffin
All of the above products contain mineral oil and are well-known causes of milia formation. Lanolin is a wax like material commonly used to treat dry skin and is also a cause of milia formation. Lanolin is traditionally used to treat nappy rash in infants and cracked nipples in breastfeeding mothers.
As part of the ageing process the skin gradually begins to lose its exfoliative ability leading to the retention of dead skin cells. This is commonly due to a loss of both collagen and elastin and this increases the chances of milia formation. Laser resurfacing and chemical peels may lead to milia formation as a common side-effect of aesthetic treatment although your practitioner is able to take precautions to reduce the risk of milia formation post treatment.
Finally milia cysts are not uncommon in newborn babies and are thought to be due to undeveloped sweat glands that are still in the maturation phase. Milia cysts in babies are known to be entirely harmless and tend to resolve within 3 to 4 weeks of birth.
How can I prevent Milia?The formation of milia, whether primary or secondary from another cause cannot be completely prevented. Injuries which cause blistering such as burns may subsequently result in milia formation.
Patients can take a number of precautions however to reduce the risk of developing milia as a result of an intervention such as laser resurfacing.
- Patients should make sure to remove all make up thoroughly before bedtime and use options which are known to reduce the risk of developing milia.
- Patients should introduce an exfoliative skincare product into their skincare routine approximately 2 to 3 times a week to eliminate superficial dead skin cells
- Patients should avoid repeated sun light exposure and always use high SPF factor sunscreen when out in the sun and wear protective clothing including a wide brimmed hat.
- Patients should maintain good skin hygiene with daily skin washes using a mild non-irritant soap.
Some patients may be more likely to develop milia and common reasons include tobacco smoking and people who have a haphazard sleep routine. There is also some evidence to suggest that reducing intake of fatty foods and taking vitamin supplementation may help to reduce the risk of milia formation. Either way, eating a healthy low-fat diet coupled with a good sleep routine and not smoking will have a positive impact on one’s general health and well-being.
Patients are reminded to never try and poke their milia cysts with their hands and to avoid using any common household items such as sewing needles to try and pop the milia cysts. There is a increased risk of skin infection and subsequent scarring if patients attempt these unsafe practices.
Our aesthetic practitioners are experts in the treatment of many different types of skin lesions and remove many hundreds of skin lumps and bumps each year. For the best milia removal treatments, we would recommend a consultation with one of our dermatologists to assess you and treat milia using gold standard medical treatments for the very best outcomes.
What is the best way to get rid of my milia?Home-based milia removal treatments have been shown to be ineffective. Attempting to remove milia using common household items such as sewing needles is doomed to failure. This is despite the fact that milia are found in the uppermost layers of the skin. All patients should refrain from picking at their milia or squeezing them. Milia have a firm consistency and are formed beneath the uppermost layer of the skin and are not the same as acne lesions which arise in skin pores. Manual attempts to try and expel the contents of milia cysts have a high risk of causing skin infection and in some cases even visible permanent scars. Many people will attempt to use home sewing needles to try and pop milia cysts but this is an unsafe technique as it is most likely that the needle is not packaged sterile.
We would recommend being seen by an expert practitioner at Centre for Surgery for proper medical-grade treatment using either erbium laser or radiosurgery for the most effective milia removal treatment.
Can I remove Milia by squeezing them?Removing milia by squeezing the cyst or inserting a needle into it can often be tempting. The risks of the DIY approach include skin damage, infection or scarring. We would strongly recommend avoiding this and instead being seen by a medical professional in an accredited clinical environment using an aseptic technique.
Why is laser best for milia removal treatment?Effective laser milia removal can occur with the use of erbium laser and is one of the most precise treatments available for the removal of milia. Using just a topical anaesthetic, your dermatologist can remove milia from any part of the face quickly and effectively and without any discomfort. All patients can commence their normal activities straight away after milia removal with erbium laser.
Erbium laser is a more effective treatment when compared with cryotherapy which is an older treatment for milia removal. The disadvantage of cryotherapy is its relative inaccuracy in the depth achieved with treatment which may increase the risk of scarring in sensitive parts of the face.
Treatment with erbium laser is quick and painless with patients being able to have treatment which lasts no more than 5 to 10 minutes following which they can get on with normal activities without any restriction. Erbium laser treatment is also a safe treatment method for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
There are a number of potential side-effects of laser treatment which are relatively rare and these include pain, skin blistering or pigmentary changes to the skin which can be either hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation. Patients with darker skin types may have a higher risk of pigmentary disturbance following laser treatment for milia removal.
Erbium laser Is regularly carried out by our expert skincare specialists who also use erbium laser to treat a wide variety of skin lesions without the requirement for incisions or sutures.
What are the alternative treatments for milia removal?Although erbium laser or radiosurgery are the most effective milia removal treatments, there are a number of other treatments which have traditionally been used to treat milia including chemical peels and topical retinoids in addition to cryotherapy.
Our specialists focus on providing tried and tested treatments which have highest success rates and the lowest risks.
Always remember to never try and prick milia cysts or attempt to squeeze it to expel the contents of the cyst. By attempting this there is a high risk of causing skin infection followed by potential scarring of the skin. Attempting milia removal at home should be strongly avoided.