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Laser Hair Removal Side Effects – Cancer, Bumps & Long Term Risks

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Does laser hair removal cause cancer? What are the common laser hair removal side effects? What are the risks involved with a Brazilian laser hair removal?

When body hair is too much to handle with regular shaving or waxing, then laser hair removal may be a fast alternative. It is normal to ask various questions before booking an appointment with a reputable clinic near you. You may want to know the cost of laser hair removal as the first thing before finding out whether the procedure hurts. How bad does laser hair removal hurt? Once you have found the answer to this question, the next big one would be about the risks associated with this procedure.  This article will give you all the laser hair removal side effects, those that go away after a few hours or days and those that are long term. Discover also whether laser hair removal can cause cancer and the side effects, you should expect when getting a Brazilian laser hair removal.

Reasons Why You may Experience Laser Hair Removal Side Effects and Risks

The risks associated with laser hair removal are avoidable if you choose your technician or dermatologic surgeon wisely. Do not be afraid to verify his or her certifications and the years of training to ensure you are in the right hands. You can do these by asking questions and asking to see the actual certifications.

Laser hair removal is considered medicine in 35 states, which is the majority and therefore, physicians only should carry out treatment. In 26 states, however, technicians under the supervision of a physician can carry out the procedures. It is important that you ensure that you have a physician present to do the treatment or is there standing by to supervise as the procedure is being done.

You should also ensure that the machines in the chosen facility are FDA approved and are actually owned by a physician. This is a common regulation that should not be taken for granted. Otherwise, laser hair removal side effects should be expected.

A medical examination should also precede the laser hair removal. If you do not go through a physical exam or have the physician asking you what medications you are on currently, you are in the wrong hands and you could end up with laser hair removal risks.

Redness after laser hair removal
Redness after laser hair removal

Common laser hair removal side effects include the following temporary risks. These often go away after a few hours and sometimes after a few days. Therefore, you should not panic when you experience:

  • Redness
  • Pain that is persistent
  • Tattoos on the area of treatment are damaged
  • Increased hair growth instead of a reduction
  • Swelling around a hair follicle also known as follicular edema
  • Eye injury if getting laser hair removal on eyebrows
  • Itching
  • Numbness
  • Acne breakout
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Hypopigmentation

    Hypo-pigmentation is one of the side effects
  • Cold sores development
  • Erosion on lip, if having a procedure done on upper lip
  • Blistering

All these minimal risks may occur due to various reasons including:

  • The use of wrong laser for the skin type
  • Insufficient or inconsistent cooling
  • The use of the wrong settings on laser hair removal devices
  • Choice of facility, choosing a beauty spa instead of a medical office
  • Using IPL laser hair removal instead of real laser
  • Tanning before and immediately after the procedure
  • Using antibiotics before the treatment, you should be able to stop on their use at least two weeks before the procedure.

Long Term Laser Hair Removal Side Effects

Laser Hair Removal Burns
Laser Hair Removal Burns

On the other hand, you may experience long term laser hair removal side effects. These will become a reminder of the procedure for the rest of your life because you cannot erase them. Such long term risks include:

  • Scarring especially if your skin is prone to getting keloids or hypertrophic scars
  • Skin texture changes
  • Burns when the laser is directed on one spot for too long
  • Hypopigmentation
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Death from prolonged numbness when the numbing gel or cream is used on a large area of treatment


Brazilian Laser Hair Removal Side Effects-Risks Down There

Brazilian laser procedures are popular to women for various reasons. Some claim to be able to clean the area better, while others insist that it keeps the area aerated. Whatever the reason, Brazilian laser procedures are a welcome idea when you want that section to be left bare when wearing a skimpy bikini or when just having a passionate moment with your significant other.

Herpes Simplex on face
Herpes Simplex may develop after Laser Hair Removal

However, Brazilian laser hair removal side effects should be feared. You can acquire a viral infection of Herpes Simplex from getting your region down there lasered. Similarly, another common viral infection appears in the form of bumps. Most physicians will treat you beforehand whether you have the virus or not. Unfortunately, if you go to spas without a physician present, then these infections may not be alien to that region.

Worse still, you can acquire HIV from the use of unsterilized laser hair removal equipment used on an infected person. The infections are the worst-case scenario of Brazilians. However, you should expect some itching or swelling after the procedure. These two latter side effects disappear after a short while.

Laser Hair Removal Side Effects Cancer- Does Laser Hair Removal Cause Cancer?

Anything that radiates light is approached with caution for fear of cancer. However, laser hair removal makes use of non-ionizing radiation. This kind of radiation does not cause skin cells to mutate. Therefore, laser hair removal side effects cancer is impossible.

If it was possible to get cancer from laser hair removal procedures, then not only those who go for procedures would be culprits of the dreaded disease, but anyone who comes into contact with visible light, ultraviolet light from the sun, radio waves, x-rays or make use of microwaves and cell phones. Laser hair removal side effects cancer is unheard of.

According to Dr. Deborah S. Sarnoff MD, a clinical professor of dermatology, NYU Langone Medical Center and Vice President of The Skin Cancer Foundation who spoke to skincancer.org, some of the lasers may be useful in treating pre-cancerous lesions. This does not lead to the development of cancer at all.

How to Get Rid of Laser Hair Removal Side Effects Bumps

Bumps after Laser Hair Removal
Bumps after Laser Hair Removal

If you get laser hair removal side effects of bumps on the treated area, you can get rid of them using the following ways:

  • Cold compresses for fifteen minutes 3-4 times a day
  • Using a gentle cleanser on the area to prevent bacterial infections
  • Applying a steroid cream courtesy of your doctor’s prescription
  • Avoiding the sun and using sunscreen for a whole month after treatment.

Posted Comments [1]

  1. I’ve been in the radiology field for many years, and too much radiation ( repeated x rays , cat scans ) can in fact cause cancer. That’s why we need to wear dosimeters at all times. It is not wise to let people think x rays which are ionizing should be grouped with those that are non ionizing like microwaves. Thanks.


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