Age spots, sun spots, liver spots, brown spots, no matter what you want to call those darkened spots on your skin most of us view these spots as unattractive and hate the fact that they mar what might otherwise be a perfect complexion. Let’s face it, these dark spots make us feel old and less than attractive and to make matters worse most of us have no one but ourselves to blame for the appearance of these brown ugly spots.
Never mind the fact that we earned these age spots by spending our youth worshipping or at least exposing our delicate skin to the sun without adequate protection from the sun’s harmful Ultra violet rays and that this exposure caused the melanocytes (pigment producing cells) to go into overdrive and produce darker pigment as a way of protecting us from the sun. What is important is that we now have these spots and we want to get rid of them. Unfortunately, unless you want to spend years in a cave, they probably aren’t going to disappear on their own, which means that you are going to have to take matters into your own hands and find an effective way of getting rid of those age spots.
Here are a few removal techniques available today:
Chemical peels are best done by a trained professional. The procedure is not difficult although it can be uncomfortable. The professional uses a chemical mix that they put on those dark spots that literally burns away the top layer/layers of skin. A neutralizing agent is then put on to stop the chemical action and then you are sent home to heal. Depending on how many layers the chemical peel penetrated it can take several days or a week or more to heal.
You can expect some scabbing and swelling and some pain during the healing process. Once the new skin replaces the skin that burned away most of the dark spots will be gone, though in some cases you may need more than one treatment to rid yourself of all the spots. While chemical peels work well for most people, they are far less effective on people with darker skin. Chemical peels may also leave behind scars, and lighter spots of skin known as hypo-pigmentation as well as result in the appearance of some dark spots from the treatment itself.
Laser treatments like chemical peels basically burn off the top layer or layers of skin to remove that dark pigmentation. Unless you have a large amount of age spots that need to be removed usually a laser treatment can get most of the spots in one treatment though you may need a second treatment to get those spots that go deeply into the layers of skin. Laser treatments can be expensive and healing time will vary deepening on the size of the area treated.
Like chemical treatments, laser treatments aren’t as effective on people with darker skin, and such treatments can leave behind small scars, light spots, and even other pigmentation spots.
Dermabrasion is most often performed by a dermatologist or plastic surgeon. The patient is given anaesthesia and then the top layer of skin is basically sandblasted so that new skin can grow. Recovery can take some time and once the anaesthesia wears off there can be quite a bit of pain during the first couple of days of healing process. However, unlike laser treatments or chemical peels, dermabrasion works well on dark as well as light skin tones.
Microabrasion is basically a gentler form of dermabrasion. It requires no anesthesia and the treatment only involves the very top layer of skin, which results in recovery taking only about 24 hours. However, like other age spot removal procedures it can be somewhat expensive and since only the top layer of skin is removed it may take two or more treatments to remove all of the sunspots.
There are a variety of home remedies that have been used through out the generations to fade age spots. Everything from washing in lemon juice several times a day to putting various brands of toothpaste on your dark spots. While some of these home remedies work better than others and most are safe to use, even the most effective of these remedies can take months before you see any real results.
Skin Whitening Creams
Probably the least expensive means of ridding your skin of those age spots is to use a skin lightening or whitening cream. These creams run from prescription creams that are extremely expensive to over the counter creams. Many of these creams contain chemicals which may reduce those dark age spots but, can be unhealthy for your skin and for your health as the body absorbs the chemicals rubbed into the skin.
There are all natural skin whitening creams that are safer and some are highly effective but, since they don’t contain those powerful chemicals they do take time to work. However maintaining your health while fading those dark spots should be worth a little patience on your part.
If you don’t already have age spots, the best thing you can do is avoid getting them by using an all natural sunscreen whenever you are planning to spend time in the out of doors. Doing so may result in completely eliminating the need of ridding yourself of these spots as you age. If however, you already have those age spots, and aren’t willing to live with them, then choosing one of the methods of removal is your only option. So consider each option carefully and then make your choice based on your own individual needs, safety and finances.