I had my full face and neck done yesterday, and I have to agree that this was the most painful cosmetic procedure I've had on my face (Sciton laser resurfacing, IPL, fillers, Botox, etc). However, don't be too scared--you can get through it! I found it to be a situation of mind over matter. When it was intense (particularly the brow area), I squeezed the heck out of two stress balls and imagined the wrinkles and sagging being blasted away.
My procedure took about an hour and 20 minutes. After reading all of your helpful reviews, I tried to think about how to express the sensation as I was going through the procedure. It was like little machine gun blasts of prickly sensations--sometimes mildly uncomfortable and a few times eliciting laughing profanity. Tears did leak out, though, so it was quite intense at times--but not the entire time. A couple of times as she did the brow, I could feel zaps all the way up in my scalp.
My doctor prescribed Valium and 800 mg Motrin. Not sure I saw any results immediately, although I did not expect to. Time will tell. Today I feel slightly swollen (although the appearance of the swelling is subtle). I didn't tell my mother I had this done and happened to see her this morning. She said nothing, which is the ultimate testament to my "zero downtime" experience. I was warned that bruising could occur, but that it was rare. Today I feel a little flushed and quite sore in my neck and jaw--like a bad case of sore and swollen glands.
Interestingly, the bony areas are less sore despite being more painful during treatment. No bruising at all. A couple of times today I thought about applying ice to my face and/or taking an OTC pain reliever, but it was too cold to seriously consider the ice and it really didn't feel necessary. Time will tell regarding results. I'll be sure to update as time goes on. I'm hopeful!