Photorejuvenation refers to the visible improvement of a wide array of skin conditions using a laser or light source.
Light… It’s a truly magnificent thing if you think about it. Light helps us to differentiate between night and day, different seasons, and an entire spectrum of colors and shades. Light can create time by setting circadian rhythms. Light creates warmth, and even creates vitamins. Light provides sustenance to the earth and, upon it’s signal, plants and trees are stimulated to bloom and grow. Light provides all living things with the nourishment for they need for survival.
Light is a magnificent thing! What if I told you there was a safe and effective treatment available that addresses many unwanted disorders of the skin, AND can also reverse the aging process of those skin cells? Sound too good to be true? It’s really not!
How does it work? BBL, or BroadBand Light, is a type of phototherapy that delivers specific wavelengths of light into the skin. Each wavelength has a specific frequency, and the excitement of its atoms are unique and will vary from one wavelength to the next. The light energy gets delivered and heats the upper layers of the skin, creating a specific combination of light and heat, or photothermal energy.
Different wavelengths serve different purposes, and each one targets and eliminates many of the undesirable features of the skin. Colors are a big target for BBL, and this includes your reds, browns, and general dyschromias. Common targets that fall into this category include freckles, sun/age spots, hair follicles (for hair removal), birthmarks, acne and acne scarring, port wine stains, rosacea, telangiectasias and fine vessels that cause redness. By selecting the appropriate wavelength or filter, your doctor will be able to treat a broad range of skin conditions caused by skin aging and sun exposure. Sometimes more than one wavelength can be used for the best results.
So how does this treatment also turn back the aging clock?
The difference between aged skin cells and young skin cells is gene expression and transcription activity. One study compared skin biposies of treated versus untreated areas on older and younger patients. The study looked at the actual DNA of the skin cells, which revealed a big difference between treated and untreated skin. A gene expression assay revealed that skin in older patients treated with BBL began to take on the gene expression of skin in younger patients. Another 2013 study demonstrated that patients who maintain a regular regimen of BBL treatments both reduce and delay the long-term signs of skin aging such as photodamage, pore size, telangiectasias, fine lines, wrinkles, and skin laxity in a natural looking way. The different wavelengths of light that are delivered into the skin over time not only address visible skin conditions, but create an environment for skin cells to remain healthy and youthful. The patients that were followed had aged almost 2 decades during the course of the study, and they appeared younger than their actual age due to the long-term treatment and routine maintenance with BBL.
There are many procedures out there today in the evolving field of aesthetic medicine and skin care. Many patients will often ask what is the best procedure to fix their concerns, and my answer is always the same: “There’s not one procedure that does it all. Good aesthetic care of the skin is a lot like exercise ~ it’s the combination of different procedures, strategies and patient education that really help to create the most beautiful, natural and long-lasting results.” I’ll also say, “The skin is a living, breathing organ, and it’s the largest one you’ve got. Internal and external health need to work harmoniously for optimal health of this organ.” Filler injectables and botulinums address volume, laxity and wrinkles, but aren’t able to address color, pore size, or texture of the skin. Good diet and lifestyle practices will help the skin to be healthy and clear, but don’t do anything to address volume loss, wrinkles, skin laxity or sun damage. The BBL however, is so unique, because it really is the one aesthetic procedure that can truly address all of these skin issues across the spectrum: color, tone, clarity, texture, pore size, wrinkles, age reversal and vibrant glow of the skin. While I would still recommend a combination approach to optimal skin care, no other aesthetic procedure, skin care product, BHRT, vitamins nor supplements even come close to the magnificent power of the BBL.
Dr. Karla Alberts, ND