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What Is EMLA, and How Does It Work?

EMLA is a numbing cream designed and manufactured by the UK-based pharmaceutical company Aspen Pharma. The primary purpose of this product is to act as a topical anesthetic. You can buy EMLA online and use it without a prescription.

EMLA works by numbing the treated area of the skin right before injecting needles, for example, in dermal filler procedures. It can be used on pretty much all areas of the body, including the genitals. The cream doesn’t completely remove all the sensations in the skin, though, as patients will still feel pressure and touch.

What Is EMLA Used for?

EMLA has many uses and is not limited to just cosmetic procedures, although that is one of its  most frequent uses.

Many doctors apply it before giving their patients vaccines, doing blood tests, or proceeding with other medical procedures involving skin penetration. Tattoo parlors have also started ordering the cream from their EMLA supplier;  many people who’d like to get a tattoo may fear needles or want a tattoo on a particularly sensitive area of their skin.

In cosmetic and aesthetic procedures, EMLA has found many usages. From cosmetic injections to hair removal and microneedling, EMLA can be applied before any relatively quick procedure that requires a topical anesthetic.

How Long Does EMLA Last?

The numbing effect of EMLA cream typically lasts two hours. Once applied, the cream slowly starts working, and it takes about an hour to reach its full effect.

The efficacy of the cream also depends on where it’s applied. For instance, it reacts the fastest when applied to the face and can start working within 30 minutes. As the cream can stay on the skin for up to five hours, it’s better to play it safe, apply it earlier than one might think necessary, and always follow the EMLA manufacturer’s recommendation.

Is EMLA Safe?

EMLA is safe to use and licensed by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). This official regulatory body in the UK is responsible for testing whether medicines and medical devices are safe for the general public.

Aspen Pharma has been selling EMLA for over 20 years as a licensed medicine and is available for distribution and sale in over 15 countries. EMLA doesn’t require a prescription as an off-the-counter cream, but it can only be sold through pharmacies and official distributors like Med Supply Solutions.

EMLA is also safe for people of all ages, including children, and generally has no drastic side effects. Still, following the manufacturer’s instructions about dosage and conservation is essential, primarily because the cream cannot be used beyond 28 days after the container is initially opened.

EMLA Benefits

As we’ve previously mentioned and what EMLA reviews confirm, the cream’s numbing properties are among its strongest points. It takes some time to reach its full effect, but lasts more than enough time for any cosmetic and medical procedure to be safely completed. The cream is very effective as a numbing product that removes pain from skin punctures, with patients feeling only slight pressure during tattooing or dermal filler injection procedures.

EMLA products also provide good value for money. They’re always sold in packs of five tubes, and when purchased through an EMLA wholesaler, the price per tube drastically drops. On rare occasions, you need to apply the whole tube of the product – only tattoo artists working on large pieces tend to use an entire 5g tube at once – so that value really means a lot, and the savings can be passed onto your clients.

EMLA Side Effects

Generally speaking, there are no severe aftereffects of using EMLA. Certain patients may experience mild reactions to the cream, including a burning or itching sensation, skin redness, and slight swelling. These reactions are temporary and, besides a little discomfort, do not cause any harm to the patient.

Each package of EMLA contains a patient information leaflet that gives information about proper dosage, application, and precautions. It’s possible to use more EMLA than recommended, leading to lightheadedness, blurred vision, numbing of the tongue, and ringing in the ears. Under no circumstances should this product be applied to the skin around the eyes or inside the mouth.

EMLA Aftercare

The nature of EMLA ingredients and their application means no special aftercare is required. It’s important to apply this topical anesthetic before the procedure and give it enough time to start working its magic.

Patients should avoid contact with sources of extreme cold or heat, as they won’t be able to appropriately react to these drastic temperatures, leading to skin damage. Generally speaking, anything that could lead to skin injury while the patient is under the effect of EMLA should be avoided.

Other than that, further aftercare depends on the procedure that followed the application of EMLA.

What Is EMLA Made of?

EMLA is a mixture of lidocaine 2.5% and prilocaine 2.5%, both substances being local anesthetics used for numbing the treated area. Besides these two key ingredients, the tube also contains macrogolglycerol hydroxystearate, carbomer 974P, sodium hydroxide, and purified water.

EMLA is sold in two variants, so when you buy EMLA online, you can choose between the economy 5 x 5g pack and the 5 x 30g surgical pack. These contain the same ingredients; the only difference is the amount of product in a single tube.

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