5 Laser Hazard Pitfalls!
1. No license
If you have read any of my posts, you would know my number one rule for all thing’s laser and intense pulsed light devices is…. Educate Yourself! Get a Laser/IPL Safety Certificate as your first step to applying for a license in Queensland, Tasmania and Western Australia and remember too it is fundamental regardless of the licensing laws in the other states and territories too because of the requirements of the national standards. The insurers love you more too when you have done laser/IPL safety as it makes their risk lower and life easier.
2. Unwanted skin interactions
When a laser or IPL is used incorrectly it can be extremely dangerous,. Think burns, pain and scars. The heat can leave mild to irreversible damage to the skin and tissue. The damage will depend on your chosen duration, wavelength and energy. In point one of this post, I flagged laser safety education, this is why a laser safety certificate is so important; it will teach you how to understand the machine and its settings, so you are safely treating every single client. You are operating a very powerful tool with the ability to cause serious damage. It is not one size fits all with devices either and learning how your unique machine works on different skin types is essential.
3. No goggles
Eye injuries, even from the smallest of laser beams can be extremely dangerous. Depending on the device it can cause corneal burn, retinal damage and sometimes the damage can be permanent and irreversible. This can be avoided by having the correct eyewear for both the operator and the client. Depending on the type of laser you have will determine the goggles you need. Most suppliers will provide you with specific goggles, however, if you ever want to buy spare pairs always check the specifications regarding the nanometres they cover and if they are for an operator or client. Check out Laser Safety Australia, for a local supplier who can look after you. Remember too that glasses that are scratched, cracked or broken will not provide protection and should be removed from use.
4. Electrocution and fire
The power of a laser source is measured in watts and depending on the machine you are going to use you will have to consider the power options. Even though the plug will fit into the existing wall outlet, to avoid a circuit break or potential fire you must get an electrician to install an outlet with the correct watts for your machine. Ask the engineer associated with the company you buy your laser from what you need to staty safe.
5. Mirrors and uncontrolled laser
Lasers will bounce off mirrors and don't lose their strength when they do. This means that eye, skin and property damage can occur because it can hit something we don't want it too. Because of this, any mirrors in your rooms at your salon/clinic must be covered while treating. If the laser beam hits your wall mirror and reflects, who knows where it could end up! The solution for your space is to use specifically designed plastic covering with a simple hook to go over the mirror or a blind with cord and safety clip to cover a larger mirror. You can also opt for a room without mirrors.