As you get older, you may start to notice discoloration in the form of spots on your face. This disparity in your skin color can give away your age. As such, many people want to remove age spots for cosmetic purposes so that they can look more youthful. Laser spot removal is one of the options available to you.
There are many questions that people have about age spots and laser spot removal, such as just how effective a treatment it is and whether or not it’s worth the price. Here’s what you need to know about age spots, laser spot removal, and the effectiveness of this treatment method.
What Are Age Spots?
Age spots are also known as sun spots, solar lentigines, liver spots, or senile lentigo. They may look like large freckles, as they are flat spots on your skin that can be brown, black, or grey in color. They commonly appear on your face or on the back of your hand, as well as other sun-exposed areas. They can appear by themselves or in clusters.
While moles present the concern of skin cancer, this isn’t the case for age spots. Age spots don’t typically need any medical treatment at all, but many people choose to have them treated for cosmetic purposes.
What Causes Age Spots?
Age spots are also known as sun spots for good reason: they’re signs that your skin has been exposed to a lot of sunlight. They’re an excess production of melanin created by your skin in order to protect it from sun damage. They can also occur as your skin ages and if you’ve had too much UV light exposure, such as from a tanning bed.
This is why age spots are most commonly seen on skin that is exposed to sunlight.
Age spots most commonly appear in people over 40 years of age as a result of sun exposure without the protection of sunscreen in their youth. If you have fair skin or someone else in your family has age spots, you’ll be more likely to develop them.
Should You See A Doctor For Age Spots?
It’s always a good idea to see your doctor for any new spots that develop on your skin. For instance, while some moles are benign, others can be cancerous, and you’d need a doctor to tell you whether or not you need to be concerned.
Typically, when you see a doctor to diagnose your age spots, they’ll let you know that these are generally harmless and you don’t need to treat them unless you have cosmetic concerns. However, if the spots have changes in appearance, such as blackening, irregular borders, increasing size, or bleeding, you’ll want to have them examined, as this could indicate melanoma (aka, skin cancer).
What Is Laser Spot Removal For Age Spots?
There are many treatment options available to you if you wish to make your age spots less noticeable. From chemical peels to dermabrasion to laser spot removal, you can select the ideal treatment for your needs and budget.
Laser spot removal works by treating the increased pigmentation in your skin. It does this by penetrating the spots with lasers and then breaking them up, leaving you with a fainter spot. Most patients see results within one or two sessions and don’t need anesthesia during the treatment.
You may worry about whether laser spot removal will cause skin discoloration in another sense, by lightening your skin too much. This depends on the color of your skin. If you have darker skin, you are likely better off selecting a different treatment method. However, if you have lighter skin, your dermatologist will be able to ensure that your skin blends well together.
Is Laser Spot Removal For Age Spots Effective?
This depends on what you mean by effective. As a treatment method to reduce your spots and grant you younger-looking skin? Absolutely. As a permanent solution, though? Unfortunately, there’s no such thing, not yet, anyway. Regardless of the type of treatment you select and how successful it is at fading your spots, they will come back in time.
As such, you will need follow-up treatments in order to keep your skin looking the way you want it to. It’s similar to wrinkles: sure, there are treatments out there that can reduce the appearance of your wrinkles. However, wrinkles are just a natural part of the aging process, so they’ll come back in time.
However, when you have laser spot removal done, you’ll indeed see the effectiveness and be able to enjoy it for a good amount of time before you need to schedule your next treatment.