Battling Sunspots Through Skincare And Laser Therapy


Battling Sunspots Through Skincare And Laser Therapy

One of the most common signs of aging skin is pigmentation - often caused by exposure to the UV rays.

As noted by the World Health Organization, sun exposure can have even more serious problems - including an increased risk of skin cancer. Sometimes, our skin can develop dark spots even when we take care to avoid the sun at peak hours and wear sunscreen. For instance, hormonal issues can cause melasma - which is caused when female sex hormones produce too much melanin (melasma is actually more common in young women). If pigmentation is a source of bother, have you considered laser, and if not, what other options are there?

 Laser For Pigmentation

Lasers are a popular choice these days for those wishing for a fast, effective solution to spots and dark patches. There are many different types of laser, and when you visit a dermatologist or aesthetic specialist, you will find that they may discuss a number of different options with you. Laser should not be used when your skin is sunburned, since skin should be treated in a non-inflamed state. Indeed, to avoid sunburn and peeling, sunbathe (if you must) when the sun is low. Stay out for just a few minutes, and use a good physical block sunscreen such as zinc to reflect UV rays away from your body.  If you will be visiting the seaside or taking part in outdoor sports prior to your treatment, be sure to use a good sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30.

Ablative Or Non-Ablative Laser?

There are two types of laser that can treat pigmentation and other conditions such as lines and wrinkles. They are broadly divided into ablative lasers like CO2 (which emits a powerful wavelength of light to skin, removing its outer layers) and non-ablative lasers like Fraxel (which uses light energy) or Fractora (which uses radiofrequency energy). Both Fraxel and Fractora are used successfully to eliminate issues such as sun damage and melasma, and to improve the general tone and luminosity of skin. One important difference between both lasers is that while both can be used for acne scarring, only Fractora can be used to reduce active acne. Both require a short period of downtime, since side-effects can include a little redness and swelling. A couple of days after a Fractora treatment, patients can usually cover any redness with a gentle foundation.

What About Skincare?

Your skincare routine at night should include retinoids and hydroquinone to reduce the appearance of brown spots. Because hydroquinone can cause whitening in undesired areas of the skin, it is important to receive proper instruction on how to use this treatment, from a qualified dermatologist. You should also be aware of possible side-effects of these treatments. For instance, retinoids can irritate the skin, though sometimes it simply takes a few days of getting used to. Daily use of a good sunscreen is also key to avoiding the appearance of new dark spots. 

There is a plethora of lasers that can be used to treat pigmentation. The right choice will greatly depend on your age, the condition of your skin, and the presence of other issues you may also wish to address. The best combination for pigmentation involves both laser and diligent skincare, as well as daily use of a sunscreen - even on cloudy and cold days.

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