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EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THERMAL ENERGY

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THERMAL ENERGY

Text: Sarah Rasheed

With the increase in popularity of in-office skin treatments in the last two years, a renewed focus on skin care has emerged...

As the world shifts to remote working with virtual close-ups, the "Zoom Boom" has contributed to this change. There has been a shift in awareness of the skin texture, tone, and quality with high-definition cameras. In addition, since many patients seek treatments that address multiple issues at once, radiofrequency treatments are once again becoming extremely popular at dermatologists' offices.

What is radio frequency?

Radiation frequency involves a device that delivers thermal energy to the skin with the intention of causing micro-injuries, which cause the skin to produce new collagen. It is known to tighten, lift and firm the skin with little to no downtime when performed on the face and all over the body.

A controlled injury to the skin is the basis of many cosmetic medical procedures. Radio waves pass through the skin heat up the underlying tissue and cause a controlled burn. A trigger activates the body's innate healing process, causing collagen, elastin, and hyaluronic acid to be produced naturally in the skin. As the skin heals, it becomes tighter, firmer, and more lifted. In addition, RF's skin-tightening and fat-reduction capabilities make it suitable for contouring the face and body.

How does radiofrequency benefit us?

Lifting and Tightening

It is possible to bank collagen, i.e., preemptively limit the natural decline in collagen production that occurs as one ages, regardless of the patient, modality, and body part treated. The amount of collagen in our bodies decreases by 10 percent every decade, so younger patients will often undergo radiofrequency treatments to increase their collagen reserves. A patient's complexion appears tighter and lifted when collagen production increases.

It is thought that collagen-boosting benefits improve over time since collagen is produced by fibroblasts in the skin that, with age, stiffen and become less efficient. In fact, this prolonged tightening and lifting effect can be so pronounced that it can contribute to better outcomes following cosmetic surgery or even cause patients to postpone or cancel their plan to undergo surgery altogether.

Retexturizing the skin

When combined with micro-needling, RF can also retexturize skin, which can give the appearance of plumper, tighter skin. Having less acne scarring on your face or fewer stretch marks on your body can improve your appearance.

Are there any side effects or risks?

Breakouts

Patients can experience breakouts for a few weeks following radiofrequency treatment, which could be caused by deep heat delivery to the skin. Using occlusive creams and gels can exaggerate this symptom.

Unintended Fat Loss

Because the efficacy of a device is highly dependent on the user, it is important to speak with experts in the field. It is possible for RF to cause unintended fat loss, dermal shrinkage, and facial deflation when delivered incorrectly.

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