Laser hair removal is one method of treatment for unwanted body hair. Up to 22% of women in North America have excessive or unwanted facial hair, which negatively affects the quality of life for many individuals.
Men also feel compelled to rid themselves of unwanted body hair, as dictated by popular culture and appearance anxieties. Body hair may be undesirable for patients for cultural, social, cosmetic, or psychological reasons; unwanted hair can result in feelings of embarrassment or emotional burden that may impede patients’ relationships or daily activities. This level of impairment is comparable to that experienced by patients with psoriasis and eczema and eclipses that experienced by patients with acne.
Adequate methods for hair removal have long been in demand; long-term hair removal with minimal adverse effects is the ultimate goal. Laser hair removal has become well established as an effective form of treatment for unwanted body hair.
The shaving and hair removal market in the United States increased 8% between 2002 and 2007 and is currently 1.8 billion dollars annually.
None of the hair removal methods practiced today provides complete or permanent hair removal. This goal will likely be reached with a more complete understanding of anatomy, physiology, hair growth cycles, and laser-tissue interactions, and as more sophisticated technologies emerge.
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