Body

Age Spots

You are not alone if you suffer from pesky dark spots that seem to pop up on the face almost overnight. Technically known as age spots (also called liver spots), these discolorations on the skin can mar your complexion and cause it to look older than it may be.

But here’s the thing with age spots: they seem to get darker and harder to erase as time marches on. Luckily, new aesthetic advancements allow for science-based technologies that erase age spots quickly and effectively. That means these small circles of pigment can be lifted away once and for all, but the key to preventing their return is proper sun avoidance. While age spots tend to show up later in life (they can affect younger patients, too), those who are a bit lax on using sunscreen daily and spend ample time outdoors often have more signs of pigment.

Dark areas of discoloration may be more of a cosmetic problem than anything else, but if they are bothersome to you, there are effective ways to lighten and erase them for good.

What are Age Spots?

Age spots are nothing more than annoying discolored spots on the face. They can also occur on the hands and chest. While age spots pose no risk to the health of your skin, some patients don’t like how they look and prefer more evenly-toned skin.

Age spots form simply due to overactive melanocytes, cells that create pigment. When the sun activates the melanocytes, they kick pigment production into overdrive, resulting in dark spots on the skin’s surface.

How to treat age spots?

There’s more than one way to reduce the appearance of age spots. For starters, stay out of the sun and wear sunscreen. Sunlight revs up melanin production in the skin leading to dark spots. Conversely, age spots are a prime offender of an evenly toned complexion in more mature skin due to years of sun exposure. While the discoloration is hard to correct, it’s possible. You’ll also want to keep the skin protected at all costs with a mineral-based SPF.

Skin-brightening ingredients and agents can also help. For example, incorporating ingredients like vitamin C will help defend the skin from environmental aggressors and the sun. Plus, vitamin C and SPF deliver even better protection than either alone. As a bonus, antioxidant-rich C also helps stimulate collagen production and smooth out wrinkles and fine lines.

Besides vitamin C, other ingredients to consider are kojic acid, niacinamide, and hydroquinone.

As far as treatments go, a series of chemical peels work wonders for age spots. A chemical peel is an exfoliating treatment that relies on a mix of acids (in liquid form) and other ingredients applied to the face, neck, chest, or hands. The acids exfoliate the top layer of skin, resulting in the peeling and shedding of dead skin lingering on the surface. Chemical peels have a strong track record of refining the skin’s texture and tone and even improving sun damage, hyperpigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles, acne, and scarring. This is because the acid in the peel disrupts the bonds between dead skin cells on the skin’s surface. By creating a minor yet safe injury to the skin, the acid forces the skin to heal naturally, and the dead skin sheds to reveal new, fresh skin. However, the acid used determines how fast and deep the exfoliation goes. Other factors also influence the result, including the peel’s acidity (or pH), the concentration of the acid, and how long it’s left on the skin.

Lastly, light-based treatments and lasers are an important option. They work by targeting the melanin in the skin while gently ablating the uppermost layer of skin to remove them. We use the Enlighten III Pico Laser by Cutera to break up pigments in the skin and even out its tone.

Women rubbing cream on age spots

Preventing age spots from returning

The best way to prevent age spots from reappearing is by wearing sunscreen daily. UV light increases the production of melanin in the skin, and exposing the skin to the sun ups the chances of melanin production in small areas. A spot occurs when the melanin is made as a clump of pigment.

Get started with AdvancedMD Aesthetics of Atlanta

If you’re ready to restore your face to a more youthful appearance without age spots, there’s no better time than now to book a consultation with Advanced MD Aesthetics of Atlanta. A one-on-one consultation with our experienced, professional aestheticians and team of skin experts will determine the best non-surgical facelift for you. We can also customize a package specific to your needs so you can obtain the best results possible.

Schedule a consultation or book your age spots reducing appointment today!

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