Can Chemical Peels and Laser Resurfacing Prevent Skin Cancer?
You may be considering a chemical peel or laser resurfacing to improve your fine lines or skin texture, or perhaps you are looking to treat age spots and discolorations. And while you research both methods, you might ask yourself whether beyond just treating your skin immediately, are there other benefits these treatments can do for the skin?
“The answer is yes!” says Dr. Adam Mamelak, board certified dermatologist and skin cancer expert at Sanova Dermatology in Austin, Texas. “Believe it or not, chemical peels and laser resurfacing can also be used to prevent skin cancer.” This is an important reason to consider these types of treatment, considering skin cancer is now the most common cancer in the United States.
The Beauty Myth
Some people question whether procedures like chemical peels are actually good for your health. Many people are suspicious of the potential harm the “chemicals” in chemical peels might cause, when in fact they are very beneficial to the skin. While these peels can be used for aesthetic purposes to make the skin look younger, help treat discolorations, and improve appearance, they are also effective in treating precancerous conditions like Actinic Keratosis.
Rejuvenation or Restoring Healthy Cells?
Chemical peels are used to help “peel” back the top layers of the skin. This means that new skin layers are regenerated, becoming smoother, softer, and developing a more youthful texture. Not only are these peels good for acne and acne scarring, they can also treat other skin discoloration. Laser resurfacing is used for similar concerns, but also to treat more local issues such as dark spots, broken capillaries, and even birthmarks. Regardless of what treatment you get, it will lead to the removal of the old, damaged cells, leaving room for the growth of new, healthy cells.
Halting Harmful Changes
Some types of skin discolorations are scaly and occur in patches such as Actinic Keratosis. It’s important to get these areas treated. “Dermatologists often consider these skin lesions precancerous because if you don’t treat them, they have a higher chance of turning into skin cancer,” explains Dr. Mamelak. By having your skin treated with either a peel or a laser treatment, you are removing old cells that have endured the elements and damage caused by the sun. When you remove these cells, you are helping to lower the risk of them turning malignant.
Whether you are considering having a chemical peel or laser resurfacing, know that the benefits for your skin go beyond beauty and skin care. To learn more about what treatment would best suit your needs, please contact us today.