Acne Laser Treatment

Just like a fingerprint, everyone’s skin is a little different. But unless you’re blessed with perfectly clear skin, there’s one thing we all have in common at some point or another — acne. Often beginning in puberty, acne is a familiar problem that results in embarrassing spots, zits, pimples and other blemishes on the skin, negatively affecting your confidence and self-esteem. Both teenagers and adults can get acne, but it isn’t always easy to get rid of despite its prevalence. If you struggle with stubborn acne or breakouts and haven’t seen good results with creams, cleansers or prescribed acne medications, laser treatments at Northcoast Laser can help you achieve the smooth, clear skin you’ve always wanted in just a few weeks. Click here to view our gallery and see the skin-clearing benefits of our acne laser treatments for yourself, and keep reading to learn more.

What Causes Acne?

Acne is a common skin condition in which blackheads, whiteheads, cysts and other pimples form on the face and body. This happens when pores or hair follicles — which are small openings in the skin that allow sweat and oils to be released — become clogged. Each pore contains a sebaceous gland that produces a natural oil (known as sebum) to keep the skin lubricated, but sometimes these glands can produce too much oil and trap dead skin cells and other debris within the follicle. When this happens, it provides a rich environment for the growth of Cutibacterium acnes (C. acnes) bacteria. Although this bacteria is normally found on healthy skin, it grows readily in clogged pores and can cause an inflammatory response when trapped beneath the skin’s surface, which can lead to pus formation and the appearance of acne lesions or pimples in affected areas.

Different Types of Acne Blemishes

There are several different kinds of acne that can occur, and identifying the specific type is crucial when devising an effective treatment plan for a clearer complexion. Our skin care team has a variety of lasers and other tools available for acne treatment, which can target mild, moderate and even severe breakouts on the face and body. Most types of acne respond well to laser treatment, and the kinds of breakouts we often see include:

  • Whiteheads — Closed comedones that develop when trapped oil and skin cells plug a hair follicle and are unable to escape, causing it to bulge outward. Whiteheads are considered a mild form of acne, but picking or popping them can lead to infection.
  • Blackheads — Open comedones that form when pores get clogged near the surface of the skin, stretching it open and exposing the sebaceous material to the air. This oxidizes the trapped sebum and causes it to darken in color, giving blackheads their name.
  • Papules and pustules — Inflamed acne lesions that feel tender and sore. As the name suggests, pustules contain pus while papules do not, but picking or popping at either can spread the bacteria within and cause scarring or further infection.
  • Nodular acne — Inflamed red or flesh-colored bumps that appear beneath the skin’s surface, caused by an infection deep within the pore. This type of acne can be painful and won’t typically respond to topical medications. Left untreated, nodules can cause scarring and harden into large, stubborn cysts.
  • Cystic acne — A more severe type of acne that develops when the pore walls rupture due to a buildup of bacteria and sebaceous material, spreading the infection beneath the skin’s surface. This kind of acne results in swollen, painful bumps deep within the skin and can cause significant scarring.

Depending on the type of acne present, our skin care specialists will select the best lasers for the job and craft a personalized treatment plan to fight breakouts with maximum effectiveness. Our wide range of lasers can also be combined with other skin care treatments for optimal results, including radiofrequency (RF) sessions, microneedling, oxygen-rich Jet Peels and physician-grade skin care products. Our laser specialists will evaluate your skin during an initial consultation and recommend the best approach for achieving clear, healthy skin free of blemishes or pimples.

How is Acne Treated at Northcoast Laser?

There are several natural, prescription and over-the-counter treatment options available for managing acne, including topical creams or gels, cleansers and oral medication. Many OTC products use salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide to clear breakouts, while prescription-strength acne medication may contain retinoids or antibiotics. Many of these acne spot treatments and medications can produce negative side effects, however, and may not be effective for some types of acne.

At Northcoast Laser, we use laser treatments to fight adult and teenage acne. Compared to topical or oral treatments, lasers offer a revolutionary approach to skin care and are proven to be safe and effective for acne on the face, chest and back. Furthermore, laser treatments do not have the same drawbacks and side effects associated with some prescription drugs used for treating acne, specifically prolonged dryness, abnormal redness and birth defects. Other benefits of laser acne treatments include:

  • Eliminating acne-causing bacteria
  • Reduced inflammation
  • Minimizing the appearance of acne scars
  • Preventing future breakouts
  • Calming acne-prone skin
  • No adverse side effects
  • Long-lasting results after a series of treatments

Many patients who’ve tried topical products and other medications to reduce acne with little or no success have seen good results and achieved clear, healthy skin with laser treatments at Northcoast Laser that target acne at the source.

How Does an Acne Laser Treatment Work?

Laser treatments work to clear breakouts on two levels. First, laser-based devices deliver therapeutic wavelengths deep into the skin to target acne-causing bacteria, hindering its growth. This helps to eliminate existing acne while preventing future breakouts. Additionally, laser treatments can shrink overactive sebaceous glands and slow down sebum or oil production, restoring the skin’s natural balance for a clearer complexion. Together, these effects can safely eliminate even stubborn acne, helping both teenagers and adults achieve smoother, healthier skin. Whether your acne is caused by hormones, stress, genetics or something else, our team of skin care experts at Northcoast Laser can develop an acne-fighting treatment plan that works with the latest in laser technology.

What to Expect During an Acne Laser Treatment

Laser acne treatments are relatively quick and easy, with each session taking approximately 30 minutes to complete. Depending on the severity of your acne blemishes and the size of the treatment area, however, this may vary. During the treatment process, one of our skin care specialists will move the laser device over the designated treatment area, directing laser energy directly into the skin to zap zits, pimples and other blemishes. The laser’s wavelength will be adjusted to a precise range to effectively target C. acnes bacteria, hindering its ability to multiply. The laser can also calm overactive sebaceous glands, delivering an effective one-two punch to treat the acne, inflammation and irritation triggered by clogged pores and acne-causing bacteria. Laser therapy for acne is a comfortable experience with little to no sensation during treatment, other than a mild warmth felt in the skin. After your treatment is over, you can even resume your normal daily activities with no downtime.

Acne Laser Treatment Results

Laser acne treatments won’t cause prolonged or severe side effects compared to some acne medications and creams, but may produce some temporary redness and mild swelling. This is normal and should dissipate within one to three days, without the need for a recovery period or downtime. However, it’s extremely important to apply a moisturizing sunblock of at least SPF 30 daily following treatment to protect the skin from potential sun damage and to avoid any harsh or irritating products while the skin heals. If necessary, makeup can be applied to the treated area immediately after the procedure.

The results of laser treatments for acne are cumulative and will get better with each session. The number of blemishes and severity of breakouts should reduce over the course of treatment and beyond, with many patients continuing to improve even after their last appointment. The typical course of treatment for adult and teenage acne lasts for five weeks, with two treatments each week for optimal results. This can vary depending on individual needs and goals, and our skin care experts may recommend a different treatment schedule to help you achieve clear, beautiful skin.

Acne Scar Treatment

Breakouts on the face and body can negatively impact your self-esteem, but can also leave acne scars that act as a lasting reminder long after the pimples are gone. Treating and controlling acne as soon as possible can help prevent acne scars and clear the skin, but many topical creams or medications may not address scarring or stop future breakouts from occurring, putting you back at square one.

At Northcoast Laser, our laser treatments can both treat existing blemishes and soften the appearance of acne scars. For acne scarring, we use the LaseMD, a state-of-the-art fractional laser that has been proven to heal the deeper layers of skin and soften the appearance of acne scars without extensive downtime. For deep, pitted or stubborn acne scars, the LaseMD can also be combined with Lutronic Genius microneedling for our Total Skin Solution approach, producing even more dramatic results than either treatment on its own.

Contact Northcoast Laser

Clear skin can be achieved, especially if your acne hasn’t responded well to topical treatments or prescribed medications. To learn more about our laser treatment for acne and how it can help eliminate your breakouts or acne scarring, contact or call us today at (440) 639-3223 to schedule your consultation.