We all enjoy the end benefits of a cosmetic treatment whether it’s laser, Botox or filler. But even before you start any cosmetic treatment, here are some real questions you need to ask.
Many cosmetic treatments require multiple treatments to ensure a good result or maintenance of that result. One could potentially go in for 1 treatment, however, that 1 treatment usually is not enough to deliver optimum results. Before starting any cosmetic treatment, you should ask yourself the following questions to help get the most out of your treatment.
Let’s use the example, laser hair removal. These are just some of the questions you should ask before treatment:
- What do I hope to accomplish with treatment? Can the treatment give me those results?
You probably hope for complete hair removal. Is this a realistic goal? Probably, not. To date there is no such thing as complete hair removal with laser. Knowing this information before you begin, allows you to judge for yourself if the treatment is right for you. Perhaps you will come to the conclusion this treatment is not what you’re looking for after weighing cost and time.
- How does the technology work? How long has the technology been around? Are there any side effects? What is it FDA approved for? (for those living in the United States)
Laser hair removal treatments are delivered using technology. Understanding how it works, what it has been FDA approved for and side effects if any are key. You don’t want to run into a provider that uses technology or medication in a way it isn’t approved for (Yikes!).
- How many treatments will I need? How long is each treatment? 30 minutes? 1 hour?
This helps to plan sessions into your schedule and over a period of time. Will you be on vacation??
- How much does each treatment cost? Do you offer package deals?
Will I need follow- up treatments in the future? If yes, do I need to pay for those additional treatments?
Clarifying the cost details is really important. Need we say more?
- Who performs the treatments? Is it a nurse or a physician?
Certain states allow nurses to perform laser hair removal while other states only allow MDs. Research to see who is allowed in your state.
- How long has he/ she been performing these treatments?
Personally, I feel more comfortable receiving treatments from someone with more experience than a provider who’s only given a handful of treatments.
- Are there any contraindications to receiving the treatment? I take the following medications A, B, C. Do they pose any issues with regards to treatment?
Providers should assess whether the patient has any existing conditions or is on any medication that would not allow for treatment but I always encourage people to advocate for themselves and always ask the provider (and make sure he/ she has the qualifications to answer!)
- Can you explain the procedure to me? Is there any prep I need to do before I arrive for my appointment? Do you use numbing cream or topical anesthetic?
Knowing what to expect alleviates anxiety. You can also plan for extra needed time at the treatment place in case an anesthetic needs to be applied.
- What does the treatment (in this example, laser) feel like?
Asking this helps prepare you on what to expect and can alleviate some anxiety.
- How does the skin look after treatment? Is there any after care I need to perform after treatment? Do I need to stay out of the sun?
Again, asking these questions before hand helps to prepare you on what to expect as well as anything you need to do in caring for the skin afterwards (cleansing or applying topicals). Getting a laser treated area sunburned the next day would not feel so good (I imagine! so it’s important to know if there are special precautions to take).
- After treatment, are there any symptoms I should look out for? What should I do if any symptoms appear?
Knowing what and what not to expect after treatment is important for early diagnosis and treatment if complications occur. So ask what specific signs and symptoms should warrant contacting the provider’s office.
- What is the frequency of treatments? When is my next treatment?
Helps planning and scheduling of treatment sessions.
As you can see there are many questions to ask, these are just some of them. You might think of others and depending on the treatment, a few questions might not be applicable. These questions and their answers will help you decide if the treatment is right for you, at this time. They will also help you plan for your treatment sessions. Imagine returning back to your office meeting (after a treatment) with a bright red face (and didn’t know it??!!) Or think how you would feel experiencing a reaction after a treatment and not be sure what to do.
Be sure to speak to someone who has experience with the treatment at the place you plan to have it performed. Personally, I only speak to medical staff in charge of giving the treatments such as a licensed nurse or physician’s assistant if not the physician himself. Another thing you could do is ask your friends if any of them have knowledge or experience with the treatment. They can provide insight and feedback. Getting as much information as possible will help minimize issues. Not to say issues can’t arise however, knowing before you start is better than having an issue midway through the process. At which point you’ve already invested your time and money.
Can you think of any other questions to ask?