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June 6, 2017

// Skin Care

Wedding Season: Yet Another Reason To Remove Your Ink

Tattoo removal, it appears, is just about as popular as tattoos themselves. In other words, tattoos remain highly sought-after. People from all over the world continue to ink themselves up with elaborate designs, phrases and images that often have some sort of deeply-rooted sentimental value. However, just as many people regularly decide that the time has come for them to remove their once greatly-loved tattoos.

As time passes, people change. And, as a result, so do their opinions about the tattoos they decided to place on their bodies. Tattoos, most of them find, are no different than clothing. Eventually, they go out of style. Of course, unlike clothing, tattoos can’t be changed on a daily basis. Therefore, there is only one true solution to making that ultimate change in appearance: laser tattoo removal.

With the first day of summer coming up in about two weeks, many Canadians are considering removing their tattoos. With the warmer weather comes the time of year when we expose our skin to the sun a lot more often. Thus, tattoos are revealed for the world to see. If you’re one of those many Canadians who have decided that they no longer wish to share their tattoos with the world, then you may want to consider removing your ink.

Wedding season is here!

While there is no official “wedding season”, it goes without saying that a lot of Canadians like to tie the knot during the warm and sunny days of summer. Naturally, a wedding day is one when people like to look their absolute best. Of course, that goes double for the bride and groom! In most cases, a tattoo that has been placed on the arms, hands, neck and upper back are bound to be exposed.

Generally speaking, tattoos don’t typically match well with wedding dresses. At least, this is what is felt by many women who previously felt their tattoos were stylish and alluring. Dayna is one of those individuals. Prior to her 2014 wedding, the Florida-based bride-to-be shared her thoughts about entering married life with her tattoos in a chat on WeddingBee.com.

“I covered myself in tattoos when I was young and reckless and now I am racing the clock to get them off of me via laser treatments before the wedding,” wrote Dayna, “What can I say? I thought I was edgy and alternative and I wanted to be Angelina Jolie when I grew up. Now I look in the mirror and think ‘What WAS I thinking?’ Especially the one on my wrist. I suppose the others can wait but I can’t have this tattoo in all of my ring exchange photos.”

Dayna admits that she was less than satisfied with the laser tattoo removal treatments she underwent to remove her tattoos, stating that they carried a “higher risk of scarring”. At the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre, we wish we could have introduced her to our method of tattoo removal – Q-switched Nd: YAG lasers using PhotoAcoustic Technology. They are known for their improved methods of safety and efficacy.

Is your wedding day coming up?

While it generally takes anywhere from 5 to 15 treatments sessions for our lasers to completely remove tattoos, we can certainly start the process to help you look your best on the big day. For more information about our laser tattoo removal treatments, please don’t hesitate to call the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre at 403-358-5818 or email info@auroralaser.net.

May 30, 2017

// Skin Care

5 Foods That Will Help You Eat Your Way To Healthier Skin

There are many different ways to keep your skin looking youthful, fresh and nourished. But there is probably one way that is easier than all of the rest. It’s a no brainer when you really think about it. And that’s because keeping yourself hydrated is an integral part of maintaining good overall health. In other words, drink water! As Arshi Ahmed points out on StyleCraze.com, water is essential for maintaining optimum skin moisture.

“It replenishes the skin tissue and increases its elasticity,” she explains, “This helps delay the appearance of signs of ageing like wrinkles and fine lines…Water is a perfect replacement for your expensive anti-ageing treatments. It keeps the skin well hydrated and glistening, thereby, enhancing the complexion. For soft and supple skin, drinking an adequate amount of water is more important than applying topical creams.”

If you’re of the mind that drinking the recommended 9-12 cups of water every day is a bit much, there are certainly other ways to stay hydrated. You can eat your way to healthier skin by eating foods that are high in water-content! Here are five:

1. Watermelon.

Given its name, the entry of this fruit on this list should come as no surprise. In fact, watermelon is heralded as a food that has the ability to hydrate even better than water itself! According to Abby Lerner on Shape.com, “a 2009 study at the University of Aberdeen Medical School found that the combination of salts, minerals and natural sugars in some fruits and vegetables can actually hydrate people more effectively than water or even sports drinks. Watermelon was on top of the list, thanks to its 92 percent water content and essential rehydration salts calcium, magnesium, potassium and sodium.”

2. Iceberg lettuce.

Health experts tend to advocate dark green salads made up of baby spinach to maximize the nutritional content, says Amanda MacMillan on Health.com. However, with its 95.6 percent water content, crispy iceberg lettuce has the highest hydration power of any type of lettuce, “followed by butterhead, green leaf, and romaine varieties.”

3. Cucumbers.

You’re not likely to come across a nutritionist who doesn’t advocate salad eating. However, it’s important to include the right ingredients in your salad. Cucumbers are among them. Says Lerner, “the flesh of cucumbers is primarily composed of water but also contains vitamin C and caffeic acid, both of which help soothe skin irritations and reduce swelling—which is why cucumbers are often used to help swollen eyes and sunburn.”

4. Celery.

MacMillan dispels the myth that celery has “negative” calories. She does, however, confirm that its 95.4 percent water content helps us to stay hydrated while also neutralizing our stomach acid. Celery “is often recommended as a natural remedy for heartburn and acid reflux,” notes MacMillan.

5. Zucchini.

Not to be mistaken for cucumbers (although you can certainly find ways to eat them together), these nutritious veggies also help to keep you hydrated. “With 95 percent water by weight, Zucchini is one of the most hydrating vegetables you can eat,” informs Lerner, “A healthy serving has less than 25 calories and is an excellent source of folate, potassium, and vitamins A and C.”

Keeping yourself hydrated plays a major role in your skin’s health. However, if you feel that your skin could use a little extra assistance in getting rejuvenated, please don’t hesitate to contact the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre. We offer a variety of peels, for both young and old, that tightens skin and increases radiance. For more information, call us at 403-358-5818 or email info@auroralaser.net.

May 2, 2017

// Skin Care

What Is The Best Way To Treat Severe Acne?

Acne is a bigger problem than you may think. Millions of people all across North America suffer from it – and not all of them are teenagers. It’s not uncommon to associate the appearance of acne with the faces of adolescents. But, as many Canadians know, acne can be present well into adulthood. For particularly stubborn acne, regular washing and scrubbing may not be enough to provide a solution. In fact, sometimes it can just irritate the skin further.

What treatments are commonly used to combat severe acne?

The Acne and Rosacea Society of Canada notes that there is a number of aggressive treatments that are commonly used by adults who wish to battle severe cases of acne. They include oral antibiotics, hormonal treatments and an oral medication called isotretinion. It is described as a potent, synthetic form of Vitamin A that reduces oil gland activity, bacteria and inflammation. It also works to normalize skin shedding.

However, acne sufferers are warned of isotretinion’s severe side effects. It is known to cause severe birth defects, so women are warned to avoid it if they are pregnant or thinking of getting pregnant. “Do not use isotretinoin if you are pregnant, may become pregnant, or if you are planning to become pregnant,” warns Drugs.com, “Serious and sometimes fatal birth defects can occur if isotretinoin is taken during pregnancy. Any fetus exposed during pregnancy could be harmed…Increased risks of miscarriage and premature births have been reported.”

Corticosteroid injections are also listed as a severe acne solution by the Acne and Rosacea Society of Canada. The injection of the synthetic hormones works to alter the body’s immune response and reduce inflammation. Injections can only be used for a short period of time, however, because high concentrations can cause permanent depressions in the skin.

According to MedicineNet.com, some of the other side effects of corticosteroid injections are high blood pressure, weight gain (due to sodium retention), loss of potassium, headaches, muscle weakness, facial puffiness, facial hair growth, bruised skin, glaucoma, cataracts, stomach ulcers, menstrual irregularity and even a condition known as Buffalo hump – “a condition described as a rounding of the upper back”.

What does the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre recommend for the treatment of severe acne?

We have found that our Blue-U PhotoDynamic Therapy treatments produce long-lasting results. This special skin therapy combines topically applied Levulan (ALA) and blue light to eradicate both severe cases of acne and pre-cancerous skin lesions.

Blue-U PhotoDynamic Therapy is also effective in the treatment of sun damage, fine lines and blotchy pigmentation. The combination of Levulan and the light treatment create a unique ability to minimize pores and reduce oil glands. This effectively treats stubborn acne and helps to reduce the appearance of acne scars. The ALA/PDT combo also works to reduce the appearance of rosacea.

Blue-U PhotoDynamic Therapy treatments are known for being both safe and comfortable for patients. For many, improvement is noticeable after a single treatment. And, for others, a number of treatments over the course of a few weeks are needed to promote effective results.

For more information about how Blue-U PhotoDynamic Therapy can provide a solution to your case of severe acne, please don’t hesitate to call the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre at 403-358-5818 or email info@auroralaser.net.

April 11, 2017

// Skin Care

5 Eyebrow-Raising Ways To Reduce Fine Lines And Wrinkles

The signs of aging are unavoidable. After all, we all age and should consider ourselves very fortunate to do so. However, many of us understandably would prefer for our ages to not be so obvious.

While you can’t rewind the hands of time, you can certainly reverse the signs of aging. Those fine lines and wrinkles that appear on our faces don’t have to be so apparent. You may be surprised to find out about some of the simple steps you can take to regain your youthful appearance!

Here are five eyebrow-raising ways to reduce fine lines and wrinkles:

1. Give your face some exercise.

We’re willing to bet this tip may have raised an eyebrow or two? Exactly, how do you exercise your face? Well, keep in mind that fine lines and wrinkles are often caused by repetitive facial movements. Giving your face some activities that are out of the norm will promote the type of blood flow that will aid the skin in stretching out and smoothing away those lines.

On RemedyDaily.com, Sheree McDonald offers up a few ideas for your “facial aerobics” routine. “Stretch your mouth out in a closed smiling position. Hold the pose for 2 seconds,” she suggests, “Make a prominent kissing face where your mouth is nearly touching your nose. Hold for 2 seconds. Pull your lips forward and downward holding for 2 seconds. Repeat this cycle 20 times to stretch and strengthen your facial muscles. This targets deep lines around the mouth.”

2. Ice, ice baby!

Cold reduces swelling which is why ice is generally applied to bruises. Cold is also known for helping to improve blood circulation. McDonald writes that applying ice to your face can significantly help to improve deep wrinkles as well. “To use, rub a small ice cube around your face 15-20 seconds,” she advises, “The cooling effect will not only feel great, but it will also rejuvenate stagnant skin.”

3. Wash your face more than once a day.

We felt that this tip belonged in the “eyebrow-raising” category just because of how simple it is! If you think about it, we tend to forget to wash our faces after we’ve done so first thing in the morning. On MensFitness.com, Dr. Howard Sobel highly recommends that we wash our faces a minimum of twice a day.

“Your face needs a little more than just a rinse in the shower,” he writes, “Aim to wash it both in the morning and at night (plus after workouts). Here’s a no-frills approach: Use lukewarm water and your fingertips to suds up, then rinse and pat dry. Opt for a cleanser that contains glycolic acid to help slough off dead skin cells, which can make skin look dull.”

4. Get some egg on your face.

Who knew that being the butt of a joke would make you look younger? Okay, so we don’t actually mean it that way. Yes, the literal placing of egg on your face – egg whites, to be exact – helps to reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

“Egg whites work to tighten the skin temporarily, and regular application can help reduce the appearance of sagging skin,” McDonald informs us, “All you’ve got to do is apply the egg whites to the wrinkled areas and wait until it dries before removing. Take care to use a moisturizer as overexposure can lead to dry skin.”

5. Take advantage of the most common non-surgical procedures.

Intrusive plastic surgery is certainly not the most ideal way to go about replenishing your youthful look. There are much safer methods of smoothing away unwanted facial lines and wrinkles. At the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre, we’re proud to offer such treatments as Botox, Juvederm and Thermage. Please don’t hesitate to contact us in order to learn which of these effective treatments would be best for you!

Call the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre at 403-358-5818 or email us at info@auroralaser.net.

April 4, 2017

// Skin Care

5 Protective Measures For Your Skin While Preparing It For Summer

With the spring season officially underway, many Canadians already have the next season on their minds. After enduring a long winter, most of us look very much forward to the warm and sunny months of summer. With spring beginning to warm things up, a lot of us tend to ditch our winter clothing in favour of the more skin-revealing variety. As a result, it’s of vital important that we take extra measures to protect that exposed skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays.

The thing is, many people regard the spring as a season when they need to “prepare” their skin for the summer. Having not exposed their skin to the sun during the winter months, too many people allow the idea of looking “too pale” to creep into their minds. So, they do silly things like hit the tanning salon in an effort to get what is sometimes referred to as a “base tan”. That way, they can showcase a little “glow” when they dress in shorts and skirts. It’s not a good idea. Tanning beds cause skin damage. Period.

So, what are the best ways to prepare your skin for the summer? Consider these five protective measures:

1. Apply sunscreen.

Let’s not pretend that there’s any surprise that this tops the list. We consider it very important to remind you that sunscreen is necessary all year round. But especially when you begin to expose more of your skin to the sun, it’s advisable that you lather up with sunscreen that is SPF 30 or higher.

2. Go easy on the makeup.

We know that the spring time is the launching pad for summer. And dressing up to go out becomes more of a regular activity. But with rising temperatures comes more perspiration. The more makeup you wear, the less your skin is able to breathe and thus, you develop that oily look. How should you apply your makeup? Silvia Derasner of Toronto’s Anti-Aging Clinic offers some springtime makeup application tips.

“Balance out your makeup by focusing on your T-zone,” she recommends on the clinic’s website, “Use a light powder to conceal the shine in those areas, and stick to light, velvety lip textures. You can also pat lipstick on with your fingertips to get a transparent, lightly pigmented look. Another important point to keep in mind is that your pores need to be clear to breathe. Applying heavy makeup can clog you pores, leading to breakouts and acne.”

3. Throw on a hat.

Now that it’s spring, there are likely many fashionable hats available for sale. Why not look trendy while protecting your skin? Find a hat that shades your eyes and face. Wearing other light clothes that shield your skin from the sun is also a wise idea. This is especially true for individuals with fair skin that is prone to burning easily.

4. Exfoliate your skin.

To maintain healthy skin all year round, this is a critical step. Not exfoliating your skin allows for dead skin cells to pile up and create that dry and flaky look. It also prevents the exposure of new skin cells that would otherwise give you that fresher, more youthful appearance.

“Exfoliation promotes the growth of younger, healthier skin, so your summer glow can be at its best,” reports Derasner, “You don’t even need to buy expensive products—simply make a mixture of melted coconut oil and raw sugar and gently massage it into your face once a week. Rinse, and enjoy the silky feeling and bright skin!”

5. Rejuvenate your skin.

At the Aurora Medical Laser & Vein Centre, we offer a number of skin treatments that will both tighten your skin and increase your radiance. For more information about how we can revive and restore your natural beauty with Microdermabrasion and/or facial peels, give us a call at 403-358-5818 or email us at info@auroralaser.net.