Do you have dark brown or black spots on your face, hands, or shoulders? These are none other than age spots or liver spots. They are a type of spot hyperpigmentation that can result from prolonged exposure to the sun.
However, in today’s ultra-polluted environment, you might be wondering if age spots are normal. Well, we are here to give you every bit of information about these spots and how you can get rid of them.
What does an age spot look like?
Firstly, you must identify if your marks are age spots or other skin conditions. To correctly determine them, you should look for the following specifications:-
Colour: Age spots have an overall black or dark brown shade of colour. Ensure that your skin spot is completely one shade and not a mix of multiple colours.
Texture: Age spots feel like the rest of your skin surface. They are flat and smooth and don’t cause any pain while touching. Ensure that the age spots do not have dry ridges.
Size: Age spots are smaller than an inch. The average spot size is usually 1/4th inch. If your skin spot is larger, visit a dermatologist to rule out serious skin conditions.
Numbers: Age spots occur in groups of two or more on the affected site. There is no need to worry about them if you see a group of evenly shaped spots together.
Shape: Age spots are symmetrical with well-defined borders. They can be circular or oval. However, ensure that your age spot does not have uneven borders.
If your age spot does not satisfy any of the above criteria, we recommend you visit a dermatologist as soon as possible. It can be a sign of other skin illnesses, such as melanomas and keratoses.
What is the main cause of age spots?
The causes of age spots can vary. A few well-known causes of age spots can be linked to hyperpigmentation in the area due to exposure to agents.
Melanin production can increase due to these causes:
· Sun Exposure
· Radiation therapy
· Tanning beds
· Fair Skin
· History of multiple sunburns
· Old age
· Genetic Predisposition
· Age above 40.
How to remove age spots?
In our modern world, experienced dermatologists and cosmeticians are doing research to invent newer and safer ways of skin treatments.
Age spots are not a serious concern. However, you can opt for these skin treatments for clear and spotless skin.
Intense Pulse Light (IPL)
As the name suggests, the doctor will bombard the age spot with intense pulsating light waves in this treatment. These light waves will penetrate the skin cells to reverse melanin production and reduce the appearance of brown spots. It takes up to 3-5 sessions of IPL for a successful age spot removal.
A chemical peel involves applying a chemical solution to the skin, which causes the top layer of the skin to peel off. These peels can help to reduce the appearance of age spots. The new skin layer underneath is untouched and has no melanin production.
Microdermabrasion involves using a special tool to exfoliate the top layer of skin, which can reduce the appearance of age spots. It reveals the clear, juvenile skin underneath that replaces the age spots. However, potential side effects include tenderness and swelling.
Cryotherapy involves freezing the age spots with liquid nitrogen, which causes the cells to die and the spot to peel off. It can be an effective treatment but may leave temporary scarring. It is one of the fastest ways to remove age spots. But cryosurgery can leave temporary blisters and scars.
Laser treatment involves using a beam of light to target and destroy the cells that produce melanin. New, fair skin cells come out, and you get clear skin. It can effectively reduce or remove age spots but may require multiple sessions.
Many over-the-counter creams available in the market contain ingredients like hydroquinone, kojic acid, alpha arbutin, and alpha hydroxy acids that can lighten age spots over time. Remember to always use sunscreen after applying them.
You do not need a prescription to use them.
However, we want to remind you that OTC creams can contain either a high or low volume of active ingredients. This factor reduces their efficacy, and it can lead to potential side effects like redness and more pigmentation.
Therefore, we recommend you take a dermatologist’s guidance and then use these creams.
While they are generally harmless, it’s essential to distinguish age spots from other skin conditions and seek medical attention if necessary.
Luckily several safe and effective treatments are available, including laser treatments, chemical peels, and topical creams. Remember, maintaining healthy skin is essential to a healthy lifestyle.
Treat Your Age Spots At Eva Skin Clinic
We are experienced dermatologists acquainted with all types of skin conditions. In our long history of practice, we have treated hundreds of age spots to give clear skin to our patients. Book your appointment today to get rid of age spots and get flawless skin.