As one of the longest-standing laser treatment options, the CO2 laser is a versatile treatment that can be used to address many skin conditions. Unlike surgical or more invasive options, CO2 laser treatment has a short and simple recovery period and delivers exceptional results. If you’re not sure whether this treatment is right for you, here are answers to some of the most common questions about the CO2 laser.

Who can benefit from CO2 Laser Treatment?

CO2 laser treatment is beneficial for people with a wide variety of skin concerns. The results and benefits of the CO2 laser are often compared to a chemical peel or microdermabrasion service. The treatment is very beneficial for those dealing with uneven pigmentation or texture, sun damage or sun spots, skin laxity, wrinkles, or other signs of aging.

CO2 laser treatment is not suitable, however, for those with deeper skin tones. As you heal from the treatment, those with deeper complexions may experience hyperpigmentation or some visible scarring as a result of the treatment. For that reason, it is recommended that patients with darker skin tones receive treatments instead of CO2 laser, which can be used to treat similar conditions. Dr. Kwan can help recommend a treatment which is effective and safe for your unique skin type and tone.

How Does the CO2 Laser Work?

The CO2 laser delivers thermal energy to the skin that helps to remove dead and damaged skin cells while stimulating new collagen production. During treatment, the laser will typically be used in an “ultra-pulsed” method, meaning that the energy is delivered to the skin in rapid pulses. This effectively resurfaces the skin and treats deeper layers of the skin.

Can I Combine CO2 Laser with Other Treatments?

In most cases, it’s not recommended to combine treatments with CO2 laser on the same day. However, some patients choose to treat conditions such as wrinkles with other options, like Botox, to complement the results of their CO2 laser treatment after the healing process is complete. Dr. Kwan will help you determine a treatment plan that will be most effective and suitable for you.

What is the Recovery Period Like After CO2 Laser Treatment?

You can go home to rest immediately after CO2 laser treatment. Most patients experience redness and irritation the first day after the treatment, and Dr. Kwan will give you detailed instructions on how to care for the skin as you heal. Typically, you can expect to be able to apply makeup and resume a normal routine about a week after CO2 laser treatment, but the skin will likely remain sensitive. Avoid sun exposure as much as possible and apply SPF daily.

Schedule a Consultation

To learn more about CO2 laser treatment, schedule a consultation with Dr. Kwan. He will be able to determine whether this treatment option is right for you. Call our San Francisco office at 415.569.3868 or request more information online.