Back to Basics
Dr Hugo Kitchen of the Stratford Dermatherapy Clinic talks us through the treatments on offer that bring the zing back to our skin
Often much of the focus of cosmetic surgical media is on the big ‘sexy’ treatments and tends to ignore the mundane run-of-the-mill work we do every day. A large majority of my patients are attracted to the things they have read about in the media; the Botox or fillers. But there are many fantastic treatments that constitute our clinic backbone.
Treat your skin
Skin healthcare is often neglected by many doctors, when a few weeks of attention to improving it, may result in not only a rejuvenated appearance but may also speed up healing and recovery from other procedures we perform on the skin, including surgery.
Many of my patients have become what we call ‘Patients for Life’ since using Cosmedix® Chirally Correct skin healthcare.
The Cosmedix® treatment philosophy is based on the principal that inflammation is the core cause of all skin conditions. Traditional skincare products have primarily selected ingredients that create inflammation when addressing these common problems such as retinol (Vitamin A) and glycolic acids.
Cosmedix® use a process called ‘Chiral Correction’ which makes the active ingredients that they use in their products much less irritating. They have removed all other known irritants e.g., artificial colours and fragrances, preservatives, sodium lauryl sulphate (common in shampoos and shower gels), benzoyl peroxide (in acne treatments, hair dyes and teeth whitening) and glycolic acid.
They stimulate change in the skin without causing massive destruction to it (see face peels on popular cosmetic TV programmes!).The natural chiral agents penetrate the skin more slowly causing less discomfort and trauma and still producing results but avoiding common side-effects such as a layer of brown dead skin post-peel or hyper pigmentation and scarring.
In our view, their products are the most powerful and effective medicated-strength skincare we have used in our clinic. We have been using Cosmedix® for nearly five years and with consistent and correct use of the product, the results have been remarkable.
A new beginning
We find that microdermabrasion is a simple, quick and convenient procedure which has fantastic results in patients showing the early signs of ageing, sun exposure and other facial imperfections.
Particle skin resurfacing or microdermabrasion is a non-invasive, non-surgical, procedure that uses a highly controlled spray of fine crystals to remove the outer layer of skin and reveal the younger, tighter, and more radiant skin underneath.
Common treatment conditions include acne, fine wrinkles, sun damaged skin, oily skin and superficial age spots.
The average particle skin resurfacing procedure takes less than 30 minutes, depending upon the skin condition, the area to be treated, and the desired outcome. Many will notice improvements in the texture and appearance of their skin immediately after the first treatment.
I believe that particle skin resurfacing is setting a new standard for skin care. The procedure is fast, predictable and painless – a true lunch-hour service.
Light years ahead
Another non-invasive treatment that can improve the condition of the skin without damaging it is IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) Photorejuvenation. This can simultaneously treat a wide range of facial concerns safely and effectively, such as broken capillaries, skin discoloration, age spots, freckles, mottled pigmentation and the symptoms of rosacea.
A cold gel is usually applied to the area to be treated, and you may be given dark glasses to protect your eyes from the bright light. The smooth glass surface of the IPL handpiece is gently applied to your skin and pulses of light are applied.
You may feel a slight sting, like the snapping of a small rubber band. An anaesthetic cream may be used, but is seldom required.
Treatment is generally administered in a series of procedures that provides excellent long-term results, minimal adverse effects and high satisfaction.
The smart option
At the clinic we also offer SmartXide, a fractional laser resurfacing procedure. The gold standard in reversing the signs of ageing skin has been resurfacing with the CO2 laser.
Resurfacing is achieved by peeling away a layer of skin while causing tissue contraction. Although this modality achieves dramatic results, candidates often undergo general anaesthesia and prolonged healing and recovery times (as long as four weeks).
SmartXide have now provided us with a CO2 fractional system with a super-fast scanner that can allow us to do a ‘dot resurfacing’ of the whole face and neck in 20 minutes. The dot pattern, both in terms of power, spacing and duration can be tailored to your skin-type and degree of damage.
It is ideal for reducing and reversing the changes from sun-damage, by destroying and ‘lifting’ out abnormal pigment, as well as causing skin tightening and stimulating fibroblasts to produce more collagen and elastin, to give a younger, fresher look to the skin. It can also have an effect on wrinkles, poor texture, large skin pores and acne scars.
The role of the experienced cosmetic practitioner is to evaluate the patient and find the best procedure – this can mean taking into account their lifestyle, age, degree of damage and the results they wish to achieve. Having such a wide array of procedures available means that we can offer the very best service to our patients.