Is Laser Tattoo Removal Painful

Laser Tattoo Removal

The issue of getting a tattoo removed may be a sore subject for some people.  Removing tattoos with laser has gone through a few technological advances since it was first introduced, but those considering the process still want to know if there will be any pain involved. There’s no right answer to this question, because the level of discomfort varies from person to person. Largely, it depends on how sensitive and susceptible you are to pain.

The Pains of Laser Tattoo Removal

For most people, the process of having a tattoo removed is only mildly discomforting. Some individuals describe the experience as being similar to snapping a rubber band against your skin, while others say it feels more like dozens of tiny pin pricks. Still others compare the experience to scratching a bad sunburn. The variations in sensation have as much to do with the area in which the tattoo was placed, as much as it is an issue of pain sensitivity.

Just as it is with receiving a tattoo, the fleshier parts of the body experience the lowest levels of pain in laser tattoo removal. For instance, removing tattoos from the buttocks and upper arms are some of the least painful removals. Meanwhile, areas where the skin is closest to the bone, such as the neck, ankles, or fingers, will typically result in the most pain.

For those especially concerned about the pain, a physician can administer a topical anesthetic. This will numb the area and reduce or eliminate the pain associated with the procedure.

How Does Laser Tattoo Removal Work?

Lasers are used to target the pigmentation of the dermis, which is the layer of skin found between the epidermis and subcutaneous tissues. The pigment absorbs the laser’s light beams and that causes the colors to fragment. As this happens, the body absorbs the fragmented pigments.

There are a few different kinds of lasers used for tattoo removal, but, currently, the Q-switch is the most commonly used kind of laser. Using a high peak power supply, the Q-switch produces pulses of light that hit the pigment. The laser is extremely precise, limiting damage to the surrounding skin tissue. There are actually several types of Q-switch lasers and each one operates at a different wavelength to target a specific color spectrum.

The procedure is made as comfortable as possible. The administering physician will apply a topical anesthetic cream and provide you with eye protection and a cooling device, before he begins. As the physician starts the process, he applies laser pulses to the inked portion of your skin. Larger tattoos require a greater intensity of light pulses, though even those treatments only last for a few minutes.

Pain After the Fact

There is some pain associated with the aftercare period of laser removal of tattoos . For the first few hours after the procedure up to the next few days, it’s normal to experience redness and swelling of the skin, some bleeding, and blistering. Even after those symptoms dissipate, your skin may be extra sensitive and, while you may observe flaking, scabbing, or peeling in the area, it’s best not to scratch the skin. Experts also suggest that you avoid exposure to sunlight and public swimming pools.

After one month, your skin should have healed enough for you to return for a follow-up treatment. In most cases, you will need multiple sessions to have the ink completely removed. Professional tattooists use denser ink, so their work will take more sessions to completely remove than would be the case with amateur tattoos.

Additionally, newer tattoos will be harder to remove than ones that you have had for a few years. Also complicating removal is the location of the tattoo. In instances where the tattoo was placed on the legs and lower extremities, weaker blood circulation will make removal a more difficult process. Fluorescent colors, such as greens and yellows, are also more difficult to remove.

If you have a tattoo that you would like to have removed to advance your career, make an appointment with  a clinic for a consultation. They can discuss the procedure further and tell you what you can expect, as far as the expected number of sessions. Our state of the art equipment and highly experienced professionals can provide you with just the quality of service you’re looking for in laser tattoo removal.