What is a Chemical Peel?

Chemical peels can improve the skin’s appearance. In this treatment, a chemical solution is applied to the skin, which makes it “blister” and eventually peel off. The new skin is usually smoother and less wrinkled than the old skin.

Chemical peels can be done on the face, neck, or hands. They can be used to:

  • reduce fine lines under the eyes and around the mouth
  • treat wrinkles caused by sun damage and aging
  • improve the appearance of mild scars
  • treat certain types of acne
  • reduce age spots, freckles, and dark patches (melasma), due to pregnancy or taking birth control pills
  • improve the look and feel of skin
  • improve areas of sun damage

Who Is a Good Candidate for a Chemical Peel?

Generally, fair-skinned, and light-haired patients are better candidates for chemical peels. If you have darker skin, you may also have good results, depending upon the type of problem being treated.

If you are considering a chemical peel, you will make a good candidate if you:

  • have realistic expectations about what the chemical peel procedure can do for you
  • are in good health, emotionally stable, and do not have any pre-existing medical conditions
  • are 18-years-old, or older, and fully understand the chemical peel procedure

Initial Consultation for a Chemical Peel

A personal consultation at Park Cities Plastic Surgery is the very first step if you are considering the chemical peel procedure.

During the consultation at Park Cities Plastic Surgery, Dr. David Liland will assess your physical and emotional health, discuss your expectations about the chemical peel procedure, and the likely outcomes of the procedure.

You will also be able to ask questions, and discuss the available options and risks involved with the chemical peel procedure.

At Park Cities Plastic Surgery, Dr. David Liland will show you several pre and post-op photos of the chemical peel procedure.

Chemical Peel: The Procedure

Dr. Liland will first clean your skin thoroughly and apply one or more chemical solutions — such as glycolic acid, trichloroacetic acid, salicylic acid, lactic acid, or carbolic acid (phenol) — to small areas of your skin. That creates a controlled wound, which allows new skin to take its place.

During a chemical peel, most people feel a burning sensation that lasts about five to ten minutes, followed by a stinging sensation. Putting cool compresses on the skin may ease that stinging. You may need pain medication during or after a deeper peel.

Pre & Post-Op Tips for a Chemical Peel
  1. Do not take any medication that contains aspirin, vitamin E, weight loss medication, or Chinese herbs for two weeks prior to the surgery. A complete drug list will be provided on your pre-op appointment date.
  2. Arrange for an adult to drive you to and from your surgery. You CAN NOT take a taxi home. You must arrange for an adult to stay with you for 24 hours after the chemical peel.
  3. Do not smoke for at least four weeks prior to the surgery.
  4. Keep head elevated on several pillows to minimize swelling.
  5. Apply cold to decrease bruising and swelling for the first two days. (Try frozen peas.)
  6. Driving is permitted after a few days, if not taking pain medications.
  7. Avoid heavy lifting, straining or bending over, for two weeks.
  8. You may resume all normal activities after four weeks of the chemical peel.

Specific recommendations will be discussed when you arrive for your consultation at Park Cities Plastic Surgery in Dallas.

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