Spotting Signs of Aging on Your Skin?
They say the memory is the first thing to go…or is it hearing? Maybe waking up every day with a new ache in a joint you didn’t even know you had is the surest sign that you’re “getting up there.” Regardless of what “goes first,” our bodies will find one way or another to let us know just how old we really are, and for many people, it’s through the appearance of age spots on the skin
What Are Age Spots?
Age spots are known by many names — sun spots, solar lentigines, liver spots — are painless, and usually harmless. Technically, they’re clusters of overactive pigment cells near the skin’s surface that cause the area to become darker than your natural skin tone. Areas of your skin that have had regular, extended exposure to ultraviolet light (which speeds up melanin production) will be the most likely places for age spots to appear. People with lighter skin, and those who spend a lot of time in the sun, are most susceptible to the appearance of age spots.
Can Age Spots Be Treated?
Before exploring treatment options, you should always consult a dermatologist about your age spots to ensure that they aren’t actually skin cancers. Once your age spots are determined to be just that, there are several ways to lighten them:
- Topical products — Lightening creams, lotions and ointments are available in both over-the-counter and prescription strength. These products must be applied according to the recommended use instructions over an extended period of time to be truly effective. When purchasing such a product, be sure to avoid those containing mercury, as it can cause other serious health issues.
- Microdermabrasion — This procedure is performed by your dermatologist and essentially scrubs age spots away during the course of several treatments over 3–4 months. Microdermabrasion is highly effective; many patients enjoy the result of age spots in the treated areas disappearing completely.
- Laser treatment — Another option that is administered by a dermatologist, laser treatment to lighten age spots produces long-lasting results in fewer treatments than creams or microdermabrasion. Sometimes, patients are satisfied with their results after just a couple sessions.
- Cryotherapy — This treatment, which involves skin cells being injured through the process of freezing, can be painful, but it’s fast and usually more effective than other options such as a chemical peel. Cryotherapy treatments should be performed by a board-certified dermatologist to reduce the chance of your skin being permanently damaged.
If your skin is starting to show its age and you’d like to find the best option for treating your age spots, contact our caring providers for a consultation. We have convenient locations in Arlington Heights, Barrington, Bartlett, Buffalo Grove, Crystal Lake, Elgin, Libertyville, Lindenhurst, McHenry, Park Ridge, Naperville, Oak Brook, and soon in Skokie.
DERMATOLOGY NEAR ME
Derick Dermatology is a leading authority in medical, surgical and cosmetic dermatological services with 12 stunning Chicagoland dermatology locations. Our dedicated dermatologists offer exceptional dermatological services for both adult and pediatric patients. Please complete our online form or call our main number at (847) 381-8899 to schedule a consultation.