Will Laser Tattoo Removal Hurt?

Tattoos may be popular, but tattoo removal is even more popular. The tattoo industry grows by about 10% per year, while tattoo removal services are growing at the rate of about 18% per year. Back in 2015, about 25% of those with tattoos regretted at least one of them. That stat seems to have risen considerably in the last few years, with some estimating that around 80% of tatted folks have regrets. 

If you’re ready to ditch an old tattoo (or a new one), you may wonder whether that process is as painful as getting a tattoo. Or even more painful. 

At Shore Vascular and Vein Center in Somers Point, New Jersey, vein expert Jeffrey Gosin, MD and our team remove unwanted tats with the enlighten® III picosecond laser, which requires 40% fewer treatments than standard lasers for tattoo removal. Here’s what to expect.

If you survived eighth grade, you’ll be fine

If you went to middle school, you’ve probably already experienced the equivalent “pain” of being zapped by a laser. The most common description of the tattoo removal process is that it feels like being zapped by a rubber band. In other words, it’s a brief stinging sensation that quickly resolves.

During the tattoo-removal process, Dr. Gosin uses the dual-delivery enlighten laser to zap the pigment in your tattoo with extremely brief bursts of energy. How brief? When the pigment molecules are still large, he directs energy toward them for bursts of just two nanoseconds. Each nanosecond is only 0.000000001 seconds long.

As the laser breaks up the large pigment fragments into smaller ones, Dr. Gosin changes the pulse range on the enlighten to 750 picoseconds. How long is a picosecond? It’s 0.000,000,000,001 seconds (i.e., one trillionth of a second). You can take it.

Another benefit to enlighten is that it uses nonthermal, mechanical energy to target and break up your tattoo. That means your skin doesn’t burn, and you won’t feel warm or overheated during your session.. 

We numb you up

Of course, we don’t expect you to undergo laser treatment or any other procedure without feeling comfortable and safe. Our team first numbs your treatment area with a topical cream that dulls sensation. You may also benefit from taking an over-the-counter painkiller if you’re sensitive to pain.

All of your tattoo removal sessions take place in the comfort of our office. Each treatment is completed in about 15-30 minutes, depending on the extent of your tattoo.

enlighten is fast and thorough

Other laser tattoo-removal systems may require up to 15 treatments, separated by a month or two between sessions so your skin can heal. That means the tattoo-removal process can take a year or more.

In contrast, the enlighten laser fades your tattoo in three sessions — or even fewer. Dr. Gosin estimates your timeline when you come in for a tattoo-removal consultation. The laser removal process also triggers skin remodeling, improving the health and quality of your treated (soon to be tattoo-less) skin.

In addition to its dual-pulse lengths, enlighten features three different wavelengths of laser energy — 532 nm, 670 nm, and 1064 nm. Each wavelength works best on a specific range of colored pigments, which means it can even remove difficult blue and green pigments.

During your tattoo removal consultation, Dr. Gosin also evaluates the colors and depth of your tattoo ink. He can give you a good idea of how completely the enlighten will fade or remove your tattoo before you even start. The enlighten works on both new tattoos and older ones.

Put tattoo regret behind you by removing your tattoo with enlighten. Give us a call today at 609-297-5992, or use the handy online contact form.

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