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IPL Treatment

IPL facial treatment, Atlanta | Dr. Kathleen J. SmithIntense pulsed light (IPL) is a type of non-invasive phototherapy. IPL Treatment is used to remove dark pigmentation and other skin conditions and issues, such as those caused by sun damage or aging. Dermatology Specialists of Atlanta, a national triple board certified dermatology practice, evaluates, diagnoses, and treats all diseases and conditions of the skin including symptoms related to sun damage and aging. This treatment is commonly referred to as a photofacial.

IPL also prompts the production of more collagen and elastin to plump and freshen skin’s appearance. Patients with light skin, sun damage or signs of aging, broken capillaries, or loose skin can potentially treat all these skin conditions at once. This treatment isn’t synonymous with laser treatment.


In skin treatments, IPL can reduce fine lines or wrinkles, birthmarks, improve the appearance of large pores, remove the appearance of visible blood capillaries or vessels (spider veins), decrease local skin pigmentation (age spots or freckles), hyperpigmentation/melasma, tighten loose skin, or decrease acne or rosacea symptoms. Patients with darker skin tones may not be ideal candidates for the procedure. This isn’t a preferred method for tattoo removal. Dr. Kathleen J. Smith assists patients with concerns about these and other skin diseases or conditions to achieve healthy, beautiful skin.


IPL produces a broad light (polychromatic) spectrum instead of single-wavelength, monochromatic laser light. Consequently, different skin imperfections may sometimes be addressed in a single treatment. This non-ablative process focuses heat and light energy to skin’s deep layers but leaves epidermal (surface) skin intact. Heat reaches beneath the surface of the skin to improve both skin texture and tone. Phototherapy works to reduce melanin deposits that cause age (liver) spots or patchy discolorations of the skin.


Each in-office treatment is brief and usually takes about twenty to thirty minutes. Cooling gel is sometimes applied before treatment if the patient has very sensitive skin. Light pulses are delivered through a device that rests on the skin. According to the American Dermatology Association, the procedure is usually painless. Some patients say the treatment feels a bit like a taut band being moved across the treatment area.

Because this is a non-invasive procedure, no recovery or downtime is necessary. It’s possible to return to work or usual activities immediately after the procedure. Some patients experience temporary irritation or swelling at the treatment site.

Melanin deposits like age spots of freckles may look darker before desired lightening and fading occurs. The number of required treatments varies by individual, because the needs of each person’s skin are different. Dermatology Specialists of Atlanta recommends the proposed treatment plan with the patient and suggests scheduled treatments that are usually several weeks apart.


Patients who are good candidates for IPL Treatment should ask questions prior to the procedure. For instance, the patient may want to know why he or she is a good candidate for the treatment or how the process works in greater detail.


Dr. Kathleen J. Smith recommends treatment products and an individualized post-IPL Treatment skin care regimen for each patient. It’s important to protect skin from damaging UV skin rays. Sun avoidance, use of high-SPF treatment products and sunscreens, sun-protective clothing, and moisturizers are important to reduce irritation and protect the skin. Lifestyle changes, such as improved nutrition, increased water intake, or smoking cessation, may help the patient to enjoy healthy, more beautiful skin.


The pursuit of beautiful skin isn’t a superficial or vain quest. Skin is the body’s largest organ. Patients in the greater Atlanta metro area, including North Decatur, Doraville, Druid Hills, Panthersville, Tucker, or Chamblee, GA owe it to themselves to learn how IPL treatments can benefit their skin appearance. Call Dr. Kathleen J. Smith to arrange an appointment at 678-904-4932.

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