Excess Hair Growth and Treatment
What causes excess hair growth?
• Hormonal irregularities
• Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
• Hereditary factors
Should excess hair growth be treated?
Prior to the initiation of any hair reduction regimen any underlying medical issues need to be evaluated and treated by a dermatologist and/or endocrinologist. Beyond the undesirable cosmetic issues, excess hair can cause psychological effects as well.
What treatments are available to remove unwanted hair?
• Epilators: mechanical devices that pull hair from the skin
• Electrolysis: although permanent hair removal, it is a very slow process
• Laser/Light therapy
What is the best way to reduce the hair permanently?
At Nunnally Dermatology, we use Intensed Pulsed Light (IPL) hair reduction system to remove unwanted hair. Palomar Starlux is the most advanced Intense Pulsed Light system available today for permanent hair reduction. IPL works by emitting pulses of light into the hair follicle. The light is absorbed by the pigment in the follicles and converted to heat. The heat then loosens the hair and in the process damages the cells responsible for growing new hair. Because the light is attracted to the pigment in the hair, it is not effective when used on hair that is blonde, grey, or white.
What areas can be treated?
All areas of the body can be treated except around the eyes.
What do I need to know before having IPL hair reduction?
Patients must avoid tanning and the use of self tanners before the procedure to help avoid complications.
There is no need to let hair grow long before the procedures. It is important that the bulb of the hair be in the follicle so the hair must not be removed with plucking or waxing prior to the procedure. We recommend shaving, clipping, or depilatories at least one day prior to the procedure. These types of hair removals are surface only and the hair bulb is left intact so the laser treatment is effective.
How many treatments will it take?
The number of treatments varies depending on the color, coarseness, and thickness of the hair as well as one’s skin color. The best results are believed to be seen in fairer skinned patients with dark hair. Multiple treatment sessions are always required and average from 4-8 treatments.
With each treatment the follicle is further damaged which results in a reduction in the number and diameter of hairs. There are numerous phases in the hair cycle and all hairs are in various phases of the cycle at any given time. Those hairs that are currently in the growth phase are most receptive to IPL hair reduction. This explains why numerous treatment sessions are needed.