What is skin pigmentation and how to treat these age related changes? Most of us begin to notice a change with our skin pigmentation as we get older. Common signs we see are called age spots, liver spots and sun spots. These skin pigmentation blemishes are brown in color, and normally develop in older people, usually beginning at the age of forty, but have been known to affect those even younger. Although these spots are normal age related changes, this change in skin pigmentation affects one’s appearance and treatment is usually sought out. These age spots as they are commonly called will develop in the face, hands and neck and are actually caused not exactly due to age but by the ultra-violet rays of our sun. With continuous and considerable unprotected exposure, the ultra violet rays will infiltrate the skin and cause the formation of darker skin pigmentation. Normal age spots are quite harmless health-wise and are not a symptom of skin cancer. However, for most of us these are blemishes are ones that we want removed and there are several options for treatment available. Skin pigmentation treatments:
– Retinoid Treatment: Usually comes in cream form that is applied topically to the skin pigmentation blemishes. Retinoid is a prescribed medication that helps promote healthier skin and fading away age spots. Retinoid contains antioxidant properties that are good for defending skin cells. Keep in mind though Retinoid dries out the skin during the treatment period. An over-the counter option known as Retinol is also an option you could consider.
– Age Spot Creams or Lotions: These products usually work by bleaching the sun spots out. The result can be slow, as it is a gradual fading of the skin pigmentation discoloring of the skin underneath. The active ingredients in these products include Hydroquinone along with Vitamins A and C to help elevate rejuvenation and promote healthier skin.
– Chemical Peels: The acidic properties in the chemical peel have proved to be a successful method at removing sun spots. While this method takes a while longer, as the peels will happen gradually, eventually the desired skin tone is usually achieved.
– Laser Treatments: This is the most extreme option that may be considered. These treatments are often done in combination with other anti-aging treatments. The laser beam’s intense heat burns away the spots and restores younger looking skin. These treatments though involve several stages and thus several trips to a doctor and can be quite costly.
Prevention is the best cure of course. Undoubtedly, the most popular used method of skin protection is by using a good quality sun block cream or lotion. While sun blocks won’t help you with age spots you already have, it will help to prevent the harmful ultra-violet rays of the sun from penetrating the skin. This will help you develop less abnormal skin pigmentation and age related changes such as sun spots in later years. A good sun block can also help reduce the occurrence of skin cancers when used properly. Like any anti-aging procedure, the application of some of these treatments to help with your skin pigmentation changes could result in unwanted side effects as all of us are different. Consult your doctor with any concerns and be sure you buy quality products. (By Nikki Roberts)