Collagen induction therapy
Collagen induction therapy, also known by many names including micro-needling, is a relatively new treatment and refers to the act of inserting tiny needles into the skin to stimulate the creation of specific skin proteins (collagen and elastin). These proteins help to heal the skin and correct skin imperfections such as: acne scars, scarring, wrinkles, and stretch marks. The treatment procedure is performed by using a roller or pen-type device. We use the SkinPen, an award winning device.
What is collagen induction therapy?
Collagen therapy is classed as a minimally invasive treatment. Minute, sterilised needles are applied to the sites of the current skin concerns and new tissue growth is stimulated. The main aim of the treatment is to kind of trick the skin into healing itself and performing skin rejuvenation.
Say you have acne scarring, keloid scarring, or you just have scar tissue formation. You want to fade the scars, but without help fading their appearance may take a long time. This is where the therapy comes in. The skin jumps into action to heal the needle wounds and works on healing the other scar tissue at the same time. Micro needling is often a more cost effective treatment than laser treatments for reducing the appearance of issues like atrophic acne scars and stretch marks for certain patients.
The different terms for collagen induction therapy
There are many names for treatments that are designed to prompt the skin to produce collagen using micro needling. Some of the terms for these treatments are listed below.
There are also brands, whose products broadly do the same thing, but may be named differently. Examples of these are Skinpen and Dermapen. In addition to these, skin clinics may have their own names for the use of these devices within a treatment, when combined with other skin therapies. A vampire facial for example is a microneedling treatment combined with platelet rich plasma for the inclusion of growth factors into the equation.
- Dermal rollers
- Microneedling or Micro needling
- Microneedling collagen induction therapy
- Skin needling
How does collagen induction therapy work?
Collagen Induction Therapy helps to stimulate the body’s own cellular collagen and elastin production and processes. During the treatment process tiny needles are applied to the skin. The needles then create what is known as micro-damage beneath the skin’s surface. This micro-damage triggers normal collagen and elastin production. This is known as the wound healing process. The act of puncturing the skin to induce collagen production in the treated area.
Skin concerns that can be treated by collagen induction therapy
- Acne scarring
- Uneven skin tone
- Uneven skin texture
- Large pores
- Fine lines and wrinkles, such as crow’s feet
- Stretch marks
- Sun damage
- Ageing skin
- Hair loss (Can promote hair growth in certain circumstances)
Collagen induction therapy FAQs
Who is a good candidate for the treatment?
Anyone with skin damage or marks and wrinkles in whatever form is potentially a good candidate. The therapy is suitable for all skin types. There are a few medical exclusions for treatment though. Patients who suffer from blood clotting disorders or any disorder that causes poor wound healing should not have microneedling therapy. With the treatment of acne scarring, as long as the patient is free from outbreaks of active acne the skin can be treated. If the patient has no active herpes simplex type cold sores or open wounds in the treatment area then they should be fine to proceed.
Which medications should be avoided when having treatment?
Certain medications should be avoided before and during the treatment such as anti inflammatory medicines. Patients on blood thinning medication should not have the procedure. Please mention all topical and oral medications you have been using to the practitioner prior to commencing the treatment.
Are there side effects to the treatment?
The most common side effect post treatment is facial redness and possibly localised skin irritation after the treatment, but this will tend to subside within a day or two. Rarer side effects include skin infection (the risk is negated if you and the clinic are following strict protocols, and you adhere to the aftercare advice), and swelling, although any swelling is usually minor. The risk of infection is minimal as devices typically use sterilised medical grade stainless steel.
How many sessions are required to maximise collagen production?
How many treatments required will depend on the appearance of the condition you are hoping to treat and to some extent, the body parts you are treating. Deeper fine lines and wrinkles and prominent scarring will require more treatments. Results will start to be effective after a single treatment but most patients will require 3-6 sessions over the entire treatment area. The practitioner will be able to estimate based on the appearance.
How should I prepare for collagen induction therapy?
Some therapists will advocate the use of preparations containing active ingredients such as alpha hydroxy acids and hyaluronic acid. This should be discussed with a treatment plan. Please ensure you list and discuss all medicines and supplements you are taking during the consultation. You should attend the appointment with clear skin and not apply makeup prior to the treatment session.
If you have not had microneedling collagen induction therapy before please let the practitioner know. This will allow them to go through the procedure and a few extra pointers with you to help maximise the treatments and to avoid infection.
Is there any downtime attached to the microneedling procedure?
There is very little downtime associated with microneedling treatments. You should be able to return to normal day to day activities the following day. It is important to avoid anything that may irritate the skin post treatment. Creams containing vitamin C, retinol, and alcohol based toners are some of the substances to avoid. As with all skin treatments it is important for the patient to keep the body and skin hydrated. Please follow the aftercare advice you are given to speed up the wound healing process and the recovery time.
Collagen induction therapy is definitely a treatment you should consider if you have mild to moderate wrinkles, suffer from enlarged pore size, or any form of mark or scarring. As we age collagen production will slow down and this treatment will give the whole process of skin regeneration and skin rejuvenation a much needed boost.