Skin needling has come a long way from the barbaric, painful treatment practiced only a short time ago (and I must admit it is still happening!), when sessions had patients dripping with blood, often needed topical anaesthetic and required some serious downtime. Thanks to innovative aestheticians, skin needling is now quick with minimal discomfort and almost no downtime.
Innovators such as Dr. Andrew Christie have studied thoroughly the effects needling has on the skin and discovered that old techniques were actually over treating the skin. This meant that the wrong healing response was being stimulated which was actually hindering results. His revolutionary technique took what was a harsh ablative treatment to a gentle fractional therapy.
The changes that occur in the deeper layers of the skin following needling, need adequate time to transpire. Treating again before this time has elapsed is actually detrimental in that it triggers a cicatrical wound healing response and is effectively over-treating the skin.
Cicatricial wound healing encourages the body to produce collagen type 1; which is large and forms a weak structure which is what we see in scar tissue. It also produces an imbalance of pigment growth factors, which is why scar tissue is usually a different colour from our healthy skin. Neither of these things are desirable following a needling treatment.
The scarless wound healing that is observed with Dr Christie’s revolutionary technique triggers an entirely different response. Collagen type 3 is produced; which is small, compact and forms a strong structure akin to the collagen present in the dermis of children.
I can only hope that over time all aestheticians will be adequately informed of this important skin needling stigma.