How to Make Tattoo Removal Less Painful
It’s not an issue for all patients, and we’re often surprised by those who tough it out without wincing, versus those who dread their appointments.
There are some measures Dr. Tattoff takes to make sure patients are as comfortable as possible, but there are also some that patients can take if pain is a concern for them.
The Measures Dr. Tattoff Takes to Reduce Discomfort During Tattoo Removal:
1. Our nurses use a non-invasive forced-air cooling therapy device to blow very cold air on that tattoo we’re treating as we use the laser on that part of the skin. It helps to decrease the sensation in that area, so you don’t feel the full intensity of the laser.
2. We offer a numbing solution which can be applied up to an hour before your treatment time. We have two numbing solutions – one which requires a prescription that our nurses can write for you (which you then need to pick up at a local pharmacy), or one that doesn’t require a prescription that can be purchased directly from our clinic, which is slightly less effective.
3. Before each treatment, our nurse will use the laser on a test area of the tattoo to give you an idea how it feels. While this doesn’t necessarily help with the pain, it allows you to feel what it’s like so you can be prepared for what’s to come. Fortunately, most laser tattoo removal sessions are very quick, not lasting more than a few minutes (except for very large pieces).
4. We provide you with a stress ball. We know, that sounds like a gimme, but you’d be surprised how it helps to squeeze something in your hand. The act of repeatedly clenching the ball releases stress and boosts blood circulation.
The Measures Patients Can Take to Relieve Discomfort During Tattoo Removal:
1. Skip your coffee that morning and avoid other high caffeine food or beverages before your appointment. That’s because caffeine is a stimulant and can make you feel more awake and alert, which creates additional anxiety in some people. If you’re already feeling anxious about your tattoo removal treatment, it’s best to do something that relaxes you beforehand. Although caffeine doesn’t affect your blood pressure long-term, it can temporarily raise your blood pressure, which is another reason to lay off it on days you have laser sessions scheduled.
2. Reschedule your appointment if you’re feeling sick or under the weather. The strength of your immune system can impact how the laser feels on your skin. Coming in rested and healthy will help your endurance and pain tolerance.
3. Bring your headphones and a song or playlist with a couple of songs that make you feel good. Music can have a calming effect and take your mind off what is going on around you. It’s very common for patients to wear headphones while they’re treated for tattoo removal.
The combination of the measures we take and the suggestions for what you can do to ease the pain of tattoo removal make it less of a painful experience for most people.
If you’re thinking about having a tattoo removed and you’re concerned about the pain, we recommend coming in for a free consultation where our nurses can give you more details on what to expect from treatment.