Microneedling is not painful, but the procedure can cause discomfort. According to the Indian Dermatology Online Journal, microneedling is safe, effective, and minimally invasive. However, because microneedling involves tiny needles piercing the skin, treatments can feel uncomfortable and result in temporary and minor irritation while healing.
When you visit our clinic for microneedling, our team of physicians and nurse practitioners can administer a topical anesthesia to numb the treatment area and reduce any potential pain. Read on to learn more about the procedure and the benefits of microneedling.
What Is Microneedling?
Microneedling uses tiny, thin needles to produce minor puncture wounds in the skin. According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association (AAD), the wounds trigger the skin’s natural repair mechanisms, leading to increased collagen production and a rejuvenated appearance.
The length of the needles used for treatment will influence the amount of discomfort caused by the procedure. According to the Indian Dermatology Online Journal, needles usually range from 0.5 to 2 millimeters.
Shorter needles work for treating the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and generally cause no pain. Reducing scars requires longer needles, and the deeper penetration may be more uncomfortable.
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Reducing Microneedling Pain
There are several things you can do to reduce microneedling pain:
- Before the procedure:
- Avoid products that increase skin sensitivity, such as exfoliants and retinol
- Do not shave, wax, or use depilatories on the treatment area
- Avoid laser procedures
- Avoid sunburn
- After the procedure:
- Keep your skin moisturized and your body hydrated
- Only use lukewarm water and gentle cleanser on your face for 48 to 72 hours
- Do not use makeup or cosmetics for 48 to 72 hours
- Avoid exfoliants
- Stay out of the sun for 48 to 72 hours (or use sunscreen if you have to be outside)
- Follow your provider’s post-procedure instructions
What Conditions Does Microneedling Improve?
The U.S. Food & Drug Administration has approved using microneedling devices to reduce the appearance of facial acne scars, facial wrinkles, and abdominal scars. Microneedling is also used to treat:
- Enlarged pores
- Dark spots (hyperpigmentation)
- Stretch marks
- Burn scars
- Fine lines
- Uneven skin tone
- Skin elasticity
Should You Visit a Professional for Microneedling?
Though at-home microneedling devices are available, they are not as effective as treatments administered by a professional. According to the AAD, to get the best results, the microneedles need to pierce the skin deep enough to bleed; at-home devices do not do this.
Furthermore, at-home devices can be challenging to clean, dull quickly, and cause skin damage and infection. The FDA advises anyone interested in microneedling to choose a provider trained in performing the procedure.
What Should You Expect During Your Microneedling Treatment?
Your first microneedling treatment at our facility will begin with a consultation. Our providers will take your medical history, answer your questions, and address any concerns you may have about the procedure (including any fears regarding pain).
Before our providers administer a microneedling device to your skin, they will numb the area with a topical anesthetic. The medication will reduce any pain or discomfort. The entire treatment will last around 30 minutes to one hour and can be done in combination with other anti-aging treatments, such as platelet-rich plasma (PRP) stem cell therapy.
Microneedling requires several treatments, with a few weeks between each procedure to allow the skin to heal. However, the skin continues to produce new collagen for three to six months, when the final results become apparent.
Are There Microneedling Side Effects?
Recovery time for microneedling is minimal, and most patients can resume normal activities and return to work the next day. You can aid the healing process by staying hydrated, moisturizing the skin, and avoiding harsh products, sweating, and sun exposure.
In addition to mild discomfort, microneedling may cause a range of temporary side effects, including:
According to the FDA, more severe but less common side effects include infection, swollen lymph nodes, and cold sores. Furthermore, microneedling may not be appropriate for individuals with certain health conditions, including bleeding disorders, uncontrolled diabetes, and hepatitis.
Contact Anti-Aging & Regenerative Associates
Microneedling is not painful. The procedure can be uncomfortable but is proven to reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, acne scars, and other skin concerns. To learn more about microneedling and how it can help you achieve a more youthful, even complexion, contact Anti-Aging & Regenerative Associates today to schedule a consultation.