It is not uncommon for spots to appear on the skin as a person ages. These have been called sun spots, age spots, and liver spots. By any name, they are a frustrating problem.
It is not uncommon for spots to appear on the skin as a person ages. These have been called sun spots, age spots, and liver spots. By any name, they are a frustrating problem. For some, spots can present significant concerns due to the potential that they could indicate skin cancer. Fortunately, most discolored patches on the skin are not cancerous. They are often merely a cosmetic concern. They result from years of UV exposure that have caused melanocyte cells to produce more pigment as a protective measure. This increase in pigment, unlike a tan that comes from UV exposure, doesn’t fade. In fact, it sometimes doesn’t show up on the skin for years. Here, we discuss what can be done about unattractive sun spots.
- First things first, sun spots should be examined by a dermatologist. Skin cancer screenings have been credited with the significant reduction in melanoma deaths in recent years. This brief screening looks at all spots to ensure none exhibit signs of abnormal cell growth.
- Schedule laser treatment. In recent years, several laser devices have been developed to act on specific types of matter. Some wavelengths of light affect hemoglobin and can reduce vascular lesions. Some affect pigmentation which, in this instance, is ideal to help fade sun spots and other discoloration caused by excess melanin in the skin.
- Slough off dead and damaged skin with professional exfoliation. This may be an excellent tip to utilize after laser treatments have faded existing sun spots. Exfoliating techniques like microdermabrasion are safe and effective at sloughing off dead and damaged skin cells so pigmentation does not build up.
- Wear broad-spectrum sunscreen. It goes without saying, except that we must, that sunscreen use is essential to healthy, attractive skin. Once sun spots have developed, sunscreen does nothing to correct them. However, wearing sunscreen can help prevent worsening and new spots from forming. One of the areas where the skin is most vulnerable to sun damage is in the car. Here, people don’t think to apply sunscreen to the arms, hands, and chest. Yet, UV light penetrates the windshield and side windows and hits the skin head-on.
Spots aren’t a good look for the skin. We can help you correct this sign of aging and sun damage utilizing the most effective laser devices and techniques. Contact our Teaneck, NJ dermatology office at 201.836.9696 to schedule your appointment today.