Dermarolling side effects
Potentially the most serious side effect of dermarolling / microneedling is the (extremely small) infection. It is important to properly clean and disinfect the dermaroller immediately after use, to avoid bacterial growth. It is much less important to disinfect the skin, as it is to disinfect the dermaroller after use.
Especially dark- skinned individuals can encounter temporary hyperpigmentation, usually due to premature sun exposure after dermarolling.
There are several possible post-dermarolling effects that can't really be called "bad side effects" because they are relatively common and part of a natural skin response in many individuals, depending on the circumstances and genetic factors. Redness, irritation and the appearance of red spots are examples of such, and due to the skin having to get used to dermarolling. These side effects are individual - some people are more prone to them than others. Keep rolling - it will get better.
One adverse effect of dermarolling that is easy to avoid is the rolling over inflammatory skin conditions such as Rosacea. Dermarolling can worsen such inflammation.
When using medicinal herbs that contain steroids or corticoids or precursors to these, you should never needle the skin because corticoids interfere with wound healing. Anantamul (Sarsaparilla root) and Gotu kola are such contraindicated medicinal herbs. You should treat all herbs as potentially contra-indicated medications and only after thorough research into their active ingredients and their possible effect on the healing of skin injuries should you take them. Many Chinese and Ayurvedic medicinal herbs contain chemicals with powerful medical effects on the body and those effects can be beneficial for certain conditions and harmful for other conditions, also depending on the dosage.
Some bad side effects of dermarolling are not strictly a result of the dermarolling itself but carelessness in the application of certain products right after dermarolling without realizing that dermarolling greatly enhances the penetration of skin products into the skin and thus if the product has any potential side effects, dermarolling will increase them. Be careful with products such as Minoxidil (for hair growth), Hydroquinone (skin lightening), acidic products (acid peels) etc. Always start slowly and only if there are no problems, apply more or a higher percentage in the next session.
Dermarolling/needling can be used on any type of scars with the exception of keloid scars (do not confuse keloids with hypertrophic scars, it is not the same). The difference between a keloid and a hypertrophic scar is that a hypertrophic scar is raised but it is more or less within the boundaries of the original injury. Keloid scars outgrow the original boundaries of the injury and they grow in all directions. A person prone to keloids (which is rare) can develop a huge scar just after a bug bite or vaccination. Dermarolling/needling can make the keloid scar better, however it could theoretically make the keloid grow more by triggering collagen growth. If you want to try it anyway, needle just a very small part of the keloid as a test.
Dermarolling/needling cannot be used on the upper eyelids and right below the lower eyelashes line due to potential eyeball injury.
Single-needling can lead to bruising in cases where the skin is quite thin. Skin thickness depends on gender, age, individual genetics and skin location. Adjust the needle length and/or depth of penetration accordingly. Single-needling icepick scars can make them temporarily larger, because they start out deep and narrow but microneedling collapses their walls, making them wider and shallower. Keep needling - they will slowly fill in.
A very common, harmless side effect of dermarolling is that the skin is dryer and rough for a few days after dermarolling. The longer the needles used and the denser the needling, the more severe the dryness and roughness. The skin is being renewed and this may be slightly uncomfortable but it is perfectly normal.
There has been one report of lasting sensitivity to light and creams, but it is not clear whether this was connected to dermarolling at all. Since this was just one "derma-roller" reporting this adverse effect in many thousands of our dermarolling customers, we do not think we can classify it as a known side effect of dermarolling.
Then there has been another single report of rashes, skin sensitivity, general oversensitivity, skin peeling and skin irritation. As far as we have been able to establish, also this was not a bad effect of dermarolling but it was most likely due to a very prolonged overdose of oral vit. A, excacerbated by Psoriasis.
This is our research on the alleged dangers of Dermarolling / adverse effects of Dermarolling and not medical advice!