Questions

Can I have laser treatment if I have a suntan?

To get the best results and least side effects from laser treatment you should not have a suntan or a fake tan in the area to be treated. You should limit sun exposure and wear sun block on the area before laser treatment begins and during the course of laser treatment. If you are sun tanned your laser treatment may have to be deferred. You should also avoid using sunbeds, fake tans and moisturisers that contain tanning ingredients.

Can I have laser treatment while pregnant or breast-feeding?

Laser treatment of tattoos is not advisable in pregnancy, due to the small risk that the breaking up ink particles could be harmful to the baby’s development.

Other laser treatments e.g. hair removal laser treatment can be done safely during pregnancy. There is no known risk from laser treatment during breast-feeding.

Can I have laser treatment while taking medication?

You should inform the clinician if you are taking any medication, either prescribed or over the counter. This is because some medications (e.g. some antibiotics and St. John’s wort) can make you over-sensitive to laser treatment and increase your risk of side effects.

I have dark skin. Does this make a difference?

Unfortunately people with darker skin types have a higher risk of side effects with skin laser treatment because the brown skin has a higher chance of being accidentally damaged by the laser. However, modern technology has made laser treatment much safer for darker skins and we now have lasers that are safe for treatments such as hair removal. The doctor will discuss this with you at your consultation appointment.

Should you have any other questions, please contact the Bristol Laser Centre.

Does laser treatment hurt?

Most patients say laser treatment is uncomfortable rather than painful and are able to tolerate treatment well.  

Depending on which laser which is being used the treatment may feel like a slight stinging sensation or like hot pinpricks on the skin.

With some laser treatments we use a cooling device on the skin to reduce discomfort. It is sometimes possible to use an anaesthetic cream but most patients find they do not need this.