DOT Therapy: Anti-Ageing Treatments and Skin Rejuvenation Technologies

At Coco Ruby Skin & Anti Ageing Clinic, we offer many varied light modalities, including DOT Therapy (SMARTXIDE).

DOT Therapy (DOT laser therapy using CO2 technology) is a very effective system used to drastically reduce the appearance of deeper lines and wrinkles and improve the overall texture and tightness of an ageing skin.

DOT Therapy is a relatively fast recovery Fractional Laser and Radio Frequency device for Skin Resurfacing and Wrinkle Reduction. It is the same technology used for Vaginal Laser Treatments to tighten skin or rejuvenate cellular function of the skin in the vaginal canal, after pregnancy or menopause.

CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT WHAT IT’S LIKE TO HAVE A DOT THERAPY FACIAL TREATMENT – PHOTOS OF THE RECOVERY PERIOD including redness and swelling – and the beautiful skin results!


DOT Therapy is ideal for the treatment of:

  • Lines and Wrinkles
  • Crepey Skin
  • Skin laxity
  • Improvement of skin texture
  • Sun damage
  • Brown spots and Hyper pigmentation
  • Fine lines
  • Severe Acne Scars


Not only does the SmartXide DOT offer amazing results, it achieves this quickly and with not too much downtime compared with deep chemical peels or some other laser resurfacing options (you will, however, need to rest and recover – as you will be red and swollen for several days – and may show signs of the treatment up to 7 days post DOT Therapy).

How Does DOT Therapy Work?

  • DOT Therapy is setting a new standard for skin rejuvenation in fractional laser resurfacing.
  • Fractional lasers penetrate the skin to stimulate cellular function, resulting in a rejuvenation effect that appears from a few weeks to a few months later (due to the skin cellular turn around, what you treat in deeper dermal layers will emerge as fresher looking skin a few weeks or months later)
  • Fractional lasers are powerful and effective; they are also sometimes used in surgery or to treat scars such as acne scars or injury scars (on the body, back or face)
  • However, for skin resurfacing treatments, most lasers are still considered to be ‘non-invasive’ treatments as the skin is not excised through surgery and with DOT therapy, the spacing of the beams means a lot of healthy tissues remain intact, whilst the ‘dots’ stimulate renewal and collagen to give a rejuvenated look.

Why do they call some Lasers, such as the SmartXide CO2 laser, Fractional?

Fractional laser means that a laser beam is divided into thousands of microscopic treatment zones that target a fraction of the skin at a time. This is analogous to a photographic image being enhanced or altered pixel by pixel.

In the images below, you can see the DOTS from a DOT THERAPY session on a patient (taken immediately after the procedure).


Fractional laser treatment has bridged the gap between the ablative and non-ablative laser techniques used to treat sun-damaged and aging skin.

Whilst ABLATIVE laser treatments work mainly on the epidermis (surface skin cells) and non-ablative treatments work solely on dermal collagen (more the mid-layer of the skin only), fractional laser treatment works at both the epidermal and dermal layers of the skin.

There are now many different types of fractional lasers, but the earliest to be marketed was the Fraxel® device, emitting a non-ablative 1550-nm wavelength. There   Now some of the many lasers offering fractional technology (based on erbium:YAG lasers for superficial treatments and CO2 lasers for deeper ablative treatments) include numerous options including the celebrated DOT Therapy treatments using SmartXide’s CO2 laser technology with DOT Therapy modalities and hand pieces.

During your procedure, a Dermal Clinician will apply a pattern of tiny scanned pulses of laser energy to your skin, which is delivered with a handpiece and controlled laser beam.


As you can see above, the treated area does become pink to red immediately after treatment.  Signs that you’ve had a treatment will show for up to 7 days, but after about Day 3 to Day 4 you should be able to wear Lycogel or other Dermal Clinician approved camouflage makeup.

How long before you see results from DOT therapy?

After a treatment, your face will become red and likely swell by Day 2 up to Day 5. You’ll have specific instructions for caring for your newly treated skin, but do expect some downtime and expect the skin to feel. It can feel like a severe sunburn and may be uncomfortable for several days, but this depends on the depth or strength of the treatment, which involves multiple different settings to target YOUR specific skin problems such as acne scars or facial wrinkles.

Before proceeding with a DOT Therapy procedure, our Dermal Clinician would perform a through skin consultation to determine your concerns and specific skin problems that you would like to target with fractional laser technology.  They would help assess if this is the best treatment for you or if a different protocol might be more beneficial, and they would then customize the DOT Therapy procedure to your skin and the condition being treated.

You’d be given a treatment plan, but typically most patients require approximately 3 treatments spread about 4 to 6 weeks apart for optimal results, which tend to be seen in 3 to 6 months after the treatment (or up to a year).  That’s because the skin needs time to heal, renew and respond to the treatment – which will leave you with tighter, firmer and smoother skin – and so you’ll see results right after the treatment once the healing period is finished (1 to 2 weeks) but your best results will be more noticeable (a) after 3 treatments 4-6 weeks apart and (b) after 3 to 6 months when the skin has gone through its more full renewal cycle.

Our trained Dermal Clinician can adjust the laser settings to tailor treatment and obtain the right approach for your skin concerns whether it is lose skin, lines or wrinkles, pigmentation problems or acne scarring.

Adjustments can also be made throughout the procedure to more accurately treat specific areas such as acne scars on the cheeks or fine lines around the mouth.


  • The DOT Therapy laser precisely creates thousands of microscopic holes (DOTs) in your skin which induce immediate skin tightening and stimulate new collagen growth.
  • DOT Therapy is designed to improve the skin’s texture and tone and to soften fine lines, deep wrinkles, and acne scars.
  • Unlike other laser resurfacing technologies, DOT Therapy leaves islands of healthy tissue surrounding the DOTs enabling your skin to heal more rapidly and shorten your healing time with less risk of adverse reaction.

Does Dot therapy hurt? Painful? dot-therapy-treatment-co2-facial-laser-best-skin-types

Does DOT Therapy hurt? It looks painful

DOT Therapy applied to skin that has been pre-numbed with a topical numbing agent is usually very well tolerated by most patients.  Typically, if the face is numbed properly, a patient will report a “3 to up to a 4” out of 10 on a pain setting.  It’s not dissimilar to what you feel – briefly – when you have laser hair removal, only the sting is usually far less.   It’s also a different technology so feels a bit different to IPL or laser hair removal.

It is usually less uncomfortable (less painful) than most people anticipate, and less painful than it looks like it might be. The numbing cream (and post-treatment cool packs) work a treat.

  • The treatment can take 30 to 45 minutes not including numbing time.
  • You can have Healite II shortly after treatment to facilitate healing and calming
  • You’ll want cool packs immediately after the treatment and on the hour during waking hours for the next 24 to 36 hours if you can (this can vary so ask your Dermal Clinician)
  • Mild pain killers (over the counter) are often all you’ll need as it often LOOKS more painful than it actually is. That noted, if you have very strong settings – such as required for treating acne scars – the discomfort levels are going to be far more noticeable.
  • Most patients are readily able to tolerate the treatment with topical anaesthetic applied 45 minutes in advance – that’s why it’s important to show up ON TIME for your treatment and ask about the numbing cream.



DOT Therapy Recovery time

The Recovery process after a DOT therapy procedure takes about 4-7 days, typically 7 full days.

Sometimes residual swelling or redness may last for up to 2 weeks for some clients.

Note: Results and recovery times can vary from patient to patient, but in general, allow for a week of ‘downtime’ (it’s often best if you avoid wearing makeup for that period of time, but your Clinician will tell you when you can wear mineral makeup or camouflage makeup if you need to).

CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT WHAT IT’S LIKE TO HAVE A DOT THERAPY FACIAL TREATMENT – PHOTOS OF THE RECOVERY PERIOD including redness and swelling – and the beautiful skin results!

First Few Days after Having DOT Therapy (CO2 Laser) on the Face

For the first few days, you are likely to feel warm (to very hot) and will need to apply cool packs with protective cloths on them, to keep your swelling as minimal as possible.  Swelling starts at about Day 2 and the redness can change colour, from pink to very red, over the next few days. You’ll be given specific instructions but typically you’ll need to moisturise every hour to keep the skin moist (using a gentle, non-active moisturiser).

This can vary from person to person depending on the size of the area treated and the severity of the condition being treated and the control settings on the DOT Therapy panel, which are customised to your specific skin concerns.

Follow our BLOG where one of our patients details their DOT THERAPY treatment and recovery process.

Find out what other DOT THERAPY patients have said visit:

Next Step: Booking your Initial Consultation for DOT Therapy Laser Skin Treatments

Send us a confidential enquiry or call on (03) 8849 1400 to arrange your Confidential Consultation with one of our Coco Ruby team.

Want more information before scheduling your treatment consultation?

  • Request more information about how our skin procedures including laser rejuvenation, Fraxel, Injectables or Healite II treatments could help you – call or contact us
  • Attend our FREE Regular Practice Events and meet our Skin Treatment Experts and our team of Plastic Surgeons – learn more about non-surgical and surgical options for face, body, breast and skin

Send a confidential Enquiry form today. Or phone (03) 8849 1400.

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