Chemical peels are performed in Washington, DC by Dr. Steven Hopping, to create an even and controlled shedding of damaged skin cells.
The skin is the largest organ in our body. It is made up of millions of cells that protect us from the environment and regulate our body temperature. Every day thousands of cells die, flake off and are replaced by new cells from beneath the skin.
As we age, this process begins to slow down. Our skin may become dull. Dark blotches, fine lines and other signs of sun-damage and aging begin to appear.
Chemical peels use a solution applied to the skin to remove dead skin cells and stimulate the production of new skin cells. These safe, fast-recovery procedures can tighten skin, reduce wrinkling and restore a more youthful appearance.
During your consultation with Dr. Hopping you will want to explain the level of skin improvement you hope to achieve. Dr. Hopping will then review your medical history and examine your skin type and pigmentation to determine if you are a good candidate for a chemical peel.
Together you can evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of the different types of chemical peels, discuss your options, your expectations and determine the best treatment for you.
Remember to share any history of viral infections, sensitivity to the sun, or prior skin treatments such as dermabrasion or Accutane treatments within the past six months.
Unlike laser peels, chemical peels can be performed on the face, neck, chest, hands and even the arms and legs.
Chemical peels are performed in our fully Accredited AAAHC facility. Depending on your skin type and the desired results, Dr. Hopping may recommend a superficial, medium, or deep chemical peel. Dr. Hopping will select the proper chemical or mix of chemicals and apply the solution to various areas of skin.
Once applied, the chemical produces a separation and peeling of the outer layers of the skin. This stimulates the production of new skin from beneath. Most patients experience a warm to hot sensation, which may last as long as ten minutes, followed by a stinging sensation. For deeper peels, some patients require anesthesia.
After Dr. Hopping performs a chemical peel, reactions are similar to a sunburn and range from mild to more pronounced. Generally, the deeper the peel, the longer the recovery.
A light peel usually results in some redness, and possibly some scaling for a few days. Medium and deep peels can result in swelling and blisters that break open forming a crust and turning brown, followed by peeling which can last up to two weeks. These peels may require dressings on some or all of the treated skin. Dressings are usually removed after one to two days. Ointments and creams will be applied to keep the skin moist.
At first the new skin will have the color of a significant sunburn. This will gradually fade to pink over the next several weeks. Cosmetics can be applied after about two weeks. Following a chemical peel, your new skin will be tighter, smoother and may be slightly lighter than it was before surgery.
Following any skin peel, it is important that you avoid any exposure to the sun. Your new skin is very sensitive and susceptible to injury. Always apply a wide spectrum (UVA and UVB blocking) sunblock of at least SPF 15 twenty minutes before you go outside. Dr. Hopping will prescribe a proper home skin-care treatment program to ensure proper healing.
Chemical peels can effectively improve a wide variety of skin conditions including:
- Fine lines and wrinkles
- Uneven pigmentation
- Shallow acne scars
- Sun-damaged skin
- Age spots
A chemical peel is not a substitute for a facelift. It cannot eliminate excessive or lax skin. But, in many cases a chemical peel is performed in conjunction with these procedures.