While many believe that the laser is responsible for removing tattoo ink from the skin, it is actually your immune system that does the removal. The laser breaks up the ink into small enough particles that the immune system can then absorb and flush away.
Because the immune system is responsible for removing shattered ink particles, anything you do to boost or hinder your immune system will have an impact on the results you will see from the laser tattoo removal process. Here are a few ways to improve your immune system’s response to laser tattoo removal treatments.
Drinking lots of fluids, especially water, forces your body to flush out toxins including tiny tattoo ink particles. Staying active keeps your immune system working in tip top shape. Taking vitamins can also have a positive impact on your immune system. A deep massage to the treated area daily (once the area is beginning to heal) will help increase blood flow to the area. This keeps the immune system active in the area and ready to remove more ink particles than it would without the increased blood flow. Keeping any blisters or scabs intact during the healing process helps to keep the immune system active and also helps to prevent infection and the potential for scarring.
It is also possible to decrease your immune system’s response to laser tattoo removal treatments. Some things to avoid or cut back on include anything that would weaken your immune system. It is not a good idea to undergo laser tattoo removal treatments while fighting off an infection. Even a simple cold can keep the immune system from being as active in the tattoo site as it would be under normal conditions. Drinking alcohol tends to thin the blood and counteract the immune system response. Smoking cigarettes lessens the body’s ability to flush out toxins, and according to research, can lessen the effectiveness of laser tattoo removal by up to 70%.
Getting fresh ink while undergoing laser tattoo removal treatments can slow the removal process as well. When you get a new tattoo, the immune system jumps in to try to remove the foreign ink particles. These new particles are too large for the immune system to absorb and flush away, but for several weeks to months after getting a tattoo, the immune system tries to remove the ink anyway. This limits the immune system’s ability to respond to the smaller shattered ink particles created by laser tattoo removal treatments.
Any time the immune system is busy working on another toxin in the body, it has less resources to allocate elsewhere. For this reason, to see the best results from your laser tattoo removal treatments, you should do all you can to boost your immune system and avoid anything that could potentially decrease the immune system’s resources. As always, if you ever have questions about your treatments or the results you are seeing, feel free to ask our laser specialists. We want to see you achieve the best results possible and want you to feel comfortable every step of the way.
Below are two ring finger tattoos both after 2 treatments at Vanish. One tattoo is massaged on a regular basis, while the other one is not massaged as often. Notice the drastic difference in the two results. Now as a disclaimer, every person and every tattoo is different, but the evidence strongly points to the benefits of massaging the treated area often.