Different Types of Laser Wavelengths Used for Laser Tattoo Removal
All lasers absorb 3 components of the skin: oxyhemoglobin, water, and melanin. Every laser absorbs a different amount of each of these 3 components. Some laser wavelengths absorb a high amount of water and a low amount of oxyhemoglobin or melanin. There is never an even amount of absorption of each of these 3 components and because of this all lasers are used for different applications. Besides understanding these 3 components of the skin that lasers absorb each laser wavelength penetrate different depths of the skin.
The available laser wavelengths for laser tattoo removal
The available laser wavelengths for laser tattoo removal are 532 nm KTP, 585 nm dye, 650 nm dye, 755 nm alexandrite, 694 nm ruby, and 1064 nm Nd:Yag laser. All of these laser wavelengths absorb a different amount of melanin which is color or pigment that the laser is attracted to so not all of these laser wavelengths are appropriate for all skin types. The most common and gold standard laser combination is a Q switched laser 532 nm & 1064 nm Nd:Yag. 1064 nm is the best laser wavelength which is safe on all skin types.
- The 1064nm mainly for black,blue,cyan pigment.
- The 532nm mainly for red, coffee, brown pigment.
How does laser tattoo removal work?
Tattoos are removed by directing laser energy at the tattooed area in very short pulses, passing through the outer layer of the skin and directly targeting the tattoo ink. The laser selectively destroys the tattoo ink. Over the next few weeks, the body’s scavenger cells remove pigment residues, resulting in lightening of the tattoo.
Is tattoo removal safe?
Tattoo removal is a low-risk, outpatient procedure. Side effects are predictable and minimal. Rarely, patients may experience blistering or pin-point bleeding, but this normally heals within 1 week.
Who is not suitable for the treatment?
Clients with compromised immune systems or lymph system disorder and history of poor wound healing and very dark to black skin as there’s a high risk of hypo pigmentation occurring
The following contraindications apply: cancer, pregnancy & breastfeeding, sun tan/use of sunbeds, healing disorders such as those caused diabetes, mellitus and lupus, history of keloid scarring, recent use of roaccutane, immune, lymphatic system disorders.
What does the treatment feel like?
Most patients describe the sensation as similar to a hot pin pick or the flick of an elastic band. Whilst uncomfortable most people tolerate the treatment well. Your skin will most likely be red and feel like it has mild sunburn. This typically goes away after a couple of hours. At times and with certain inks, there may be mild blistering that usually heals in about a week. After each treatment you will be given detailed instructions on how to care for your treated area.
How many treatments are required?
Unfortunately, due to the nature of this procedure, it is impossible to predict exactly how many treatments it will take for complete results. It could take as little as 3 treatments for an amateur tattoo or as many as 10 treatments for a professionally applied tattoo. How quickly your ink fades will depend on several factors, such as the colours of your tattoo, the type of ink used, how long the tattoo has been there and how your body responds to the treatment.