Treating Sun Spots

by Jessica Wright
(last updated December 9, 2019)

Being out in the warm sun feels great on our skin, but all that sun can take its toll. After a while all that sun starts to do things to the skin. Some of the problems that occur later on comes in many forms such as wrinkles, skin discolorations, and even skin cancer.

There are a number of different characteristic symptoms of sun damage. There are sun spots (which are the easiest to see), wrinkles, the skin appears to have a "leathery" texture, and skin discoloration. Skin discolorations are also known as sun spots, liver spots, or age spots. Sun spots normally start appearing when a person is about 40 years old, although they can start earlier if there has been a lot of sun exposure.

Sun spots occur where the pigmentation of the skin is a different color (usually it's darker) than that of the rest of the skin. When the sun spots start to appear they may, at first, look a lot like freckles. With time some of these sun spots can develop into skin cancer and should be watched carefully.

When it comes to treating sun spots the obvious thing would be to avoid them in the first place. This can be done by taking care of the skin, especially when spending time outdoors. Apply a really good sun screen to the skin every time that you spend time outdoors, along with wearing protective clothing like long sleeves and a hat.

Once you begin noticing sun spots starting to appear then it's time to start treating them. There are several different ways to accomplish this.

  • Laser Treatment: One of the ways of treating sun spots is through laser treatment or other light techniques. This is accomplished by a dermatologist using flashes of light from a laser beam or other high intensity full-spectrum xenon lamp. What happens is that the outer skin is basically vaporized. When it heals the skin is lighter, tighter, and smoother.
  • Bleaching Agents: There are products that the dermatologist may prescribe that contain an ingredient called hydroquinone. This procedure isn't as harsh on the skin as the other methods are, but it does take a longer time to see results. This is also one of the less expensive ways to deal with treating sun spots.
  • Chemical Peels: This option for treating sun-damaged skin is used to strip away the dead skin cells by removing the outer layers of the skin, which stimulates the growth of new skin that is healthy. A dermatologist can prescribe products like Retin-A for this purpose.

Visit with a dermatologist and see what options are best for you. They have the knowledge and experience with what you can expect to happen and how long it will take for you to see the desired result.

Once you treat your sun spots you'll want to be sure to wear sun screen or the problem will more than likely return.

Author Bio

Jessica Wright

Jessica is a communications major studying for her masters and working full time. Growing up in a household of girls, she learned young the fun of trying new beauty ideas. Jessica enjoys playing the piano, dating, and having a good time with family and friends. ...

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