First Session of Tattoo Removal - Fayetteville, GA

Had my first treatment today. The pain was...

Had my first treatment today. The pain was bearable, I thought it would hurt a lot worst. The worst part was when it was over and the burning sensation afterwards for about 45 min. I see a little fading and I'm very anxious/nervous about all of this. I hope this will be worth it. I'm very nervous of the chances of scarring, however my doctor assured me that there would be no scarring. I'm also dreading how long this process will take and if it will even work. I'm ready for this to all be over so I can gain back my confidence. Does anyone have any advice on what I can do after treatments to help this process? Do vitamins and water help? Also I am scheduled to go every 4-5 weeks... Will I see better results if I wait longer in between sessions? I will post after pics in 3 days when my bandages are off!
Thank you so much for taking the time to share your tattoo removal journey with us! Would you mind updating your review and adding the location of your tattoo and the type of laser you are being treated with, this way this information won't get lost once the comments grow. Did you use any numbing cream prior to the treatment? 

As for vitamins and water, eating a balanced healthy diet with lots of fresh veggies, dark leafy greens, nuts, seeds etc, and lots of water is key. What I love to do is add lemon to my water as it is loaded with vitamin C and antioxidants and has a cleansing effect on your system, you could add lemon to green tea which is a huge immune booster as well. I also use Apple Cider Vinegar as part of my daily ritual for many reasons but among it's many health benefits it is a powerful detoxifying effect on the body and it is actually very rich in minerals such as vitamins A, B's, C and E - it doesn't taste good but it's great stuff! Be sure to get plenty of rest each night and to exercise when possible and above all else having a positive outlook during this process will take you a long way - best of luck to you!
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aloha awyatt4, first session is under your belt, fantastic. Aftercare is very important: keep hydrated, consult with your professional about medication/vitamins/supplements. Some here on this forum have found that herbal supplements like sam-e, st. john's wort, interfere with the process. My after care sheet says: avoid physical contact sports until blisters have healed, no cover make-up until skin has healed, stay hydrated, avoid alcohol while healing, limit sugar and processed foods. My laser sessions were done at a plastic surgeon's office. I'm very happy with the process so far. I also have been using silicone scar sheets, when all the blisters have gone. Moisturizers are your best friend at this point. Good luck, keep us posted. aloha...k
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hey k, could you tell me more about these silicone scar sheets? are they expensive and how do you use them?
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2 days after session 1

Hello! I'm very thankful for the feedback I got, so thank you. It's night 2 of my first tattoo removal. I did blister, but it doesn't hurt, just looks gross. I've kept my tattoo bandaged, changing the bandage every night for 3 nights. I was told I could shower 2 hours after treatment and I have to say- it stings. Water touching it just feels like a strong stinging sensation no matter what the pressure or temperAture of water I use. So this is very annoying. Did anyone else have this issue? Also I am going back and forth about how much time I should put between each sessions. I just want to do whatever makes this process quicker. As we all understand I'm sure. I'll post a picture as well of my tattoo!

Question about options!

Has anyone considered the surgery for a large tattoo? Excision?
Thank you guys! I'm so shocked by all this kindness. It's so appreciated! And willhughes- I am going to new you in Fayetteville! fair pricing it seemed and closer to me than Atlanta! I definitely am going to try saline rather than water. the water is very annoying so thank you for the tip! and I have a bandage on for 3 days bc my job requires me to be active constantly (I'm a nanny) and I wanted to protect the blisters until they heal- also if the child I nanny saw the blisters or scabbing I think he would get upset lol. That may be silly, I just don't want him to get upset bc he's too young to understand lol. and lastly, excision does seem too much for my tattoo size/location. I just need to learn patience. This all really is a good learning experience ya know?
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That was to everyone not just will! Sorry! Lol. I meant to answer everyone's question by name!
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Hey, welcome to the site :) you'll receive a lot of support here whilst you go through your removal. Like wilhughes said below, laser is the way to go, at least to begin with. You have to be prepared to give it a fair shot (as in a year plus) and understand that it isn't a quick process, but with the right commitment you can achieve great results. I honestly don't think excision would be a viable option for you with a tattoo that size and in that location. If it could be done I imagine it would take multiple operations, probably spread over a similar length of time as laser removal, and you'd very likely be left with multiple, unsightly scars. Laser removal is a long, drawn out process - It's mentally tough, but it's the best chance of leaving your skin looking decent at the end, so it's worth it. Best of luck. We'll be here to lean on the whole time. Remember to set your sights on that final result, and you'll get there.
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Session 1 again!

I want my details to be as descriptive as possible because I know when I was researching tattoo removal I wanted to know EVERYTHING I could read lol. I just wanted to say that for me, my shoulder feels kind of like a got punched when I sleep (I am on day 3 of tattoo session 1). It is just very sore and uncomfortable to put pressure on. It feels very similar to what it felt like after I got tattooed in that area. it's completely bearable though so no one worry! I just want to make sure I don't leave Anything out for someone who is scared and wants to know details before going through it themselves! I also have formed another blister. They are fairly large (about the size of quarter+). I'll upload a picture in a few hours when I get home! I'm not too excited about going through this once a month lol, but at the same time it's worth it and I feel proud of myself for going through this even though it's "self inflicted" pain in top of a mistake. It still is something we should proud of for handling because the average person I do not believe could do this! So good luck everyone and I'm praying for a good recovery for all of you!
You give me hope!! I also have a big piece that I'm going to be removing. Im glad I'm not the only one!
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Oh you aren't the only one at all! I'm very positive that this will be worth it in the end. It's just frustrating if you aren't patient like me hahaha.
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Hi there, congratulations on starting your removal process. Tattoo removal is a long and mentally-draining process. Most of your time is spent trying to stay positive, and realself is great for that! I'm really concerned that you're asking about excision; I noticed a few people mentioned my review below. My tattoo is also quite large and I was about five minutes from having the procedure done (I was about to follow the surgeon into the room), and I backed out at the very last second. Excision will leave a scar which can stretch and become very wide, and as everyone scars differently, you could have a really horrible, and even raised scar. Whenever I think about that hospital now I feel physically sick, and I can't believe I came so close to literally ripping my arm to pieces. I would only recommend this for really tiny tattoos. I noticed you also asked about the time between sessions. I would go back for treatment no less than every ten weeks minimum. A tattoo can fade for MONTHS after treatment and having extra sessions won't really speed anything up, plus you'll save money. I apply pure aloe vera gel after treatment (as it's pure, it's transparent and not green), and I drink plenty of water. Exercise also helps flush the ink out. Even with this in mind, all our bodies are different and certain things work better than others. When you start seeing your tattoo fade you'll feel much better and you'll constantly learn more about removal along the way. Hope this helps. :-)
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Pictures of 3 days after first session

Hi nice to hear from you I am also in the process of removing a large piece similar colours a complete mess , this second laser treatment has being depressing the itch has mentally wore me out , would try anything to rid myself of this
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Ah I haven't experienced the itch but I have heard ointment helps a ton!
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The itch...lol... The only thing that I found that helps mine is this super nasty Neem oil. I did and tried everything I was told to use by my doctor and people on here.
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Taking a shower is painful

I am on day 3- my bandages come off today for good, and I desperately want to take a full head to toe shower without pain. Does anyone know how to stop that? it feels like a stinging sensation- exactly what it feels like when you get a blister that pops and touch it. I hate it. I haven't been able to do much more than a couple seconds of water because it stung so bad. I'm desperate for the spots to become scabs :(

Picture didn't upload! Blister day 3

Blisters are such a bugger but a huge part of this process! Glad you are keeping your roses on the arm, they are beautiful. 
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Are you removing all the tattoos on your arm or just the shoulder?
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Welcome to out little corner of the internet! I am removing a rose on my knee :( hope you get some nice fading. I am also super impatient!
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Astanza revolution laser

Is the one I am using. It is a q switch. I have only had one session but I already see fading in the red ink. Should I switch to a different laser though?
If it's working I say stick with it, what is making you question the laser?
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Everywhere I have read claims pico laser is the best and quickest at getting this done! I just didn't know if I was being dumb
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Although Pico is great for blue, purple, greens, it does not fare well w/ red ink pigment. You should stay w/ the Q-switched that has a 532nm wavelength for the red ink.
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Tattoo removal day 4 1st session

Day 6 concerns

I noticed a few pink spots and I'm wondering if this is scarring?
Is it raised at all? 
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No just "shiny" lighter skin
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Shiny is pretty normal after treatment, it happened to me every single time, and as for it being lighter, that may be a sign of hypopigmentation, but you are best to check with the experts - ask your doctor or feel free to post a question to our doctors on site, here is a link.
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So worried

My red roses are turning purple and so flaky and I'm terrified of scarring. Normal?
Your normal. Think of it like this. What does your skin do after a nasty sunburn. Its going to peel and thats when the itch comes. Its part of the healing process.
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Is the color change normal though? It looks extremely strange. Lol
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Yeah, since you have had it laser treated its going to be weird as far as the color goes thats just part of the process. Mine looks likeI've had a toddler drawing on my ankle with a sharpie now. Broken up line and strange colors.
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3 weeks In to first session

I am almost completely healed and noticed white on the outside of my tattoo- I suppose this is scarring or permanent skin discoloration? When my tattoo is removed will it be like this as well?
Hang in there. I'm a 40 year old guy with 3/4 sleeve with some big roses getting it pulled up. On my second session. What's freaking me out is the literature on the laser releasing carcinogens and mutagens in the ink. http://www.tatt2away.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Baumler_Risks_of_Tattoo_Removal_Using_Laser_Therapy.pdf
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Stumbled across yr comment and wanted to say thanks for that link- although not really a positive in all of this, it's an interesting read and I have too have thought about all of the possibilities concerning the negatives w/ laser- that article touched on many issues and there def is not much out there on this topic. If only a "standard ink" was in use under FDA control. Taking more time b/w sessions has shown (for me) continued fading w/ less trauma from the laser. If you are getting yr sleeve removed, you should post a blog!! Either way, hope it's going well for you :)
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I'm going to post a blog. I would say I need more time but that's not the case... It's procrastination :) glad I found this place. Yes I'm glad laser is an option for all of is but wish there wasn't so much gray area and unanswered safety questions. I mean no one really knows yet.
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Over thinking?

After starting this tattoo removal I am beginning to obsessively think about removing all my others- I have many and I just am starting to think I look better without them. It's scaring me and draining me how much this is effecting how I feel about myself physically. Anyone else go through this? And were you happier once you did rid yourself of all tattoos?
Awyatt- I just read a review on here by another who is also in the same boat- she added to a sleeve and then didn't like the addition, so she is considering removal and now updated that she is considering lasering all of her sleeve and other tatta. Maybe you could PM her ?? I can't relate as I was just removing a single small tatt, but I do know that even on my small tatt, this process is a mental trip!! I have other tatts but really like them, but we all need to find and do what gives us peace of mind. Here's her blog link btw : http://www.realself.com/review/sweden-se-tattoo-removal-regretting-new-halfsleeve
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*tatts
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Thank you so much for this. Sincerely. It is very kind of you.
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Longest this could take?

What's the average time it takes to remove an entire tattoo? Two years?
Hi Awyatt. The time it takes to remove an entire tattoo depends on so many different factors about the tattoo itself and your body itself. It's really hard to say, but as long as you're doing all you can to speed up the process I would say 2-3 years is realistic. Why do you ask anyway? You're doing pretty well so far.
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Why would you say 3 years? Kind if long isn't it? Mark wahlberg removed 6 tatts in 18 sessions supposedly
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I am very happy for Mark Wahlberg, but 18 sessions 2 month apart seems like being 2-3 years. It is realistic! It is better to think of a longer time and finish earlier than overwise.
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Decided to remove three more tattoos

I have decided to remove three more tattoos. Two are fairly small and one is a large one. What do you guys think the time would take? All black ink.
Awayatt4 I wish you the best with the other tattoo removals if you choose so, I think your skin has beauty with or without ink, so it's all good, and I'm sorry your review has been hijacked. If any of it has made you anxious, just remember that people are arguing these points because there are some "unknowns" , but "unknowns" can turn out to be good and you can just as easily believe the unknown factors to be positive things, as easily as someone(name not mentioned) might be psychotically negative and dooming about those same "unknowns". Keep drinking water, keep positive, and keep us posted. All the best!
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Good post j. I should not have hijacked the thread. Too much venting on someone else's blog.
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It is completely fine! This site is for venting and I enjoy reading the new stuff I get and opinions!
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Next session

I have my 2nd session scheduled for June 7th which would be exactly 4 weeks- should I up it to 8 weeks? I'm okay with it being 4 weeks but I want to do whatever causes the most progress.
Dear Awayatt, I am going through removing myself (my 3rd session next week) and what I learnt is 4 weeks is really not enough to see fading and it is better to give your skin more time to heal! If you wait longer, you will see more fading and save money! My tattoo is small and black and I can go evry 4 weeks, it is not expensive, but I prefer to go slowly, but surely and do not laser my skin too often. Good luck with your removal and remember, it all will be gone! :) Just need some time!
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aloha awayatt4: Good luck with your next session, as for waiting longer, some experts say the more time between sessions the better, while others say something else. If your skin has healed from the previous session, then go for it. That's what my expert said to me. I've waited several months, or several weeks between sessions. There might be an urgency to move forward, we all want the ink off. As long as you're healed, then proceed ahead. Stay positive, stay focused and stay healthy. Good Luck! Keep us posted, we're all hear for you, sharing your journey. aloha...k
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Second session is next Saturday

5 weeks from first. I'm nervous and anxious. I feel most depressed today. I want all my tattoos gone and I'm scared they never will be. I'm ashamed of myself for impulsively acting. This is so difficult. I wish it was an overnight thing and not a 2-3 years thing.
Hey here, I wanted to share this information with you, I realize you have already started your treatments but there is some great information, be sure to check out the video section as well - great information and more to come!

LASER TATTOO REMOVAL: 10 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW BEFORE GETTING YOUR TATTOO REMOVED
TATTOO REMOVAL VIDEOS
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Sorry to hear you are struggling, this really is a long process. Time and patience will be necessary as well as an optimistic attitude to help carry you through this journey. Are you even wanting to remove the other roses on your arm? 

I remember those days of being so upset with myself and the situation I had landed in because of my decision to get a tattoo, but what I have learned is that it doesn't help to worry and stress, you can't change the past no matter how badly you wish you could, and you just need to let go and move forward. Trust me, I got annoyed when my husband would tell me that, it's so hard to do...but it's important, and in time you will find your way just like I did and many others on the site have, check out Barbiedoll90 review, she has some great words of wisdom through this. Challenges such as situations like the one you are in now is how we grow and become wiser, this will one day be a memory and that is what wisdom is, a memory of a difficult time in our life without the emotional charge. 

Keep your chin up and be good and kind to yourself, you will get through this. 
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No I love my bottom roses. In fact those are the only tattoos I'm in love with. And I'm trying. It so exhausting. Regrets are harder when you see them physically.
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2nd session- overdue

Second session healed quickly, haven't seen results really, super bummed. It was SO painful. 8 weeks apart due to money. third session in a few weeks. Feeling super down.
I browsed through your posts and first off... Take a feel breath!! Yea the struggle all of a sudden makes you second guess the others, at least for me it did... But now I look and I don't regret my others, I KNOW I WANTED THEM. But the one I am removing made me feel like I should've never had any of them done... Time heals wounds, literally and figuratively... I am having a rather large, deep, dense black outline removed... 7 sessions in and a LONG way to go still... So my best advice is be patient... If these were done professionally they are placed deep and densely and hopefully evenly but because of that it will take longer... Now as for the white spots, I'm not sure but hypo/hyper pigmentation is always a possibility so please be aware of that... Next, what I learned with healing is it takes time... It always looks worse before it gets better... Healing cycle could be a couple days or in my case a couple of weeks... Patience and deep breaths, and yes keep yourself hydrated and as healthy as possible... Good luck and welcome to real self! ...B
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Sorry to hear youre feeling down! Dont forget I'm here for you when and if you need it :)
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Sorry you are feeling bummed :( 8 weeks is a good break and highly recommended. Check out this video that speaks to time between treatments:


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Brenda

The doctor was extremely nice and loving and relaxed. Seemed very sure of herself which is comforting.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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