Laser Tattoo Removal and Smoking: Does Smoking Have an Impact?
Regret, it’s something we try and avoid in life at all possible costs. Unfortunately, regret is a part of being human. We all make mistakes in our lives that we wish we would have avoided. Thankfully most of us usually learn from our mistakes and most do not have a large impact on our lives. Tattoos, unfortunately, do not fall under that category. A regrettable tattoo is an unsightly reminder of the mistake that you have made. Thankfully, advances in laser technology have given people with regrettable tattoos options. Laser tattoo removal isn’t an easy process. The average number of session for complete tattoo removal is 10 so there is a commitment involved in the process. But it isn’t as easy as just showing up for your sessions and hoping for the best. Smoking has a large impact on laser tattoo removal. Lets first talk about how your immune system plays in the success of laser tattoo removal.
Laser tattoo removal is done with a type of laser called q-switch. These lasers are short pulse high energy lasers. A q-switch laser pulses in nanoseconds. Compare that to a laser hair removal, which pulses in milliseconds, and you see a major difference between the two. Very short high energy pulses of laser light from the q-switch laser heat up the ink in your skin and pulverise it. In all actuality its not the laser that gets rid of the tattoo, but your body’s lymphatic/immune system that does the job. The laser does nothing more than make the ink particles small enough for your immune system to latch onto and clear, causing a “wound”. Having correct treatment guidelines in mind, it’s up to your body to effectively clear a tattoo. Now that we know what’s really doing all the work here, let’s talk about smoking
Laser Tattoo Removal and Smoking
There has been a long-standing association between cigarette smoking and its negative effects on wound healing. Cigarettes have toxins in them like nicotine, carbon monoxide, and hydrogen cyanide. In clinical trials, all of these toxins have been shown to reduce the amount of time it takes for a wound to heal. Nicotine constricts your veins and reduces the amount of nutrient rich blood the skin receives and reduces the number of red blood cells your body produces, reducing the body’s ability to heal an injured area. Carbon monoxide will reduce the amount of oxygen your red blood cells can carry, reducing the metabolic profile of your body and affecting your immune system. The same goes for hydrogen cyanide, it inhibits crucial enzymes needed for oxygen transport at the cellular level.
A recent study at a laser surgery center in Milan, Italy followed 352 people over a 5-year span while they were getting laser tattoo removal and recorded its effectiveness. It was found that those who smoked reduced their chance of successfully removing a tattoo within the industry standard 10 sessions by 70%!
It is very clear that the choices you make in your lifestyle play a major role in the effectiveness of your laser tattoo removal sessions. Living a healthy life, exercising, eating a balanced diet, and avoiding smoking all keep the body’s immune system working at optimal levels. So if you are planning on having laser tattoo removal done, we at Ivy Laser Salon highly recommend you put away your bad smoking habits before hand.
Ivy Laser Salon services the Las Vegas and Henderson area for full spectrum laser tattoo removal. Feel free to schedule your complimentary consultation appointment with us by calling us at (702) 685-1849 or clicking on the appointment button on this page.