Basking in the sun this summer, you probably weren’t thinking about all of the age spots and brown spots you could develop as a result. Whether you’re starting to see the sun damage from years of neglect, or you’re young and haven’t realized what kind of damage you’re doing to your skin, you should understand the consequences. The brown, seemingly random blotches on your face, near your eyes, along your arms, legs, hands, feet and most noticeably your chest; are all of the places these age and brown spots frequently develop on. Age spots — also called liver spots and solar lentigines — are flat gray, brown or black spots. They vary in size and usually appear on the face, hands, shoulders and arms — areas most exposed to the sun. Though age spots are very common in adults older than age 40, they can affect younger people as well.
True age spots are harmless and don’t need treatment, but they can look like cancerous growths. For cosmetic reasons, age spots can be lightened with skin-bleaching products or removed. However, preventing age spots — by avoiding the sun and using sunscreen — may be the easiest way to maintain your skin’s youthful appearance and to avoid these dark skin spots.
Brown spots or age spots do not respond to creams. They can safely and effectively be removed by a variety of laser treatments. The most effective treatment for brown spots on the face is the use of Q-switched lasers such as the Q-switched Alexandrite laser or the Q switched Nd-YAG laser. Often, one treatment is enough to eradicate brown spots safely and effectively anywhere on the body. Rarely a second touch up treatment will be necessary. Freckles on the face, chest, and back can also be effectively treated with the Q-switched Alexandrite of Nd:YAG lasers.
Fractional Resurfacing with the Fraxel laser is also an effective treatment for brown spots for those individuals who additionally seek improvement in fine and moderate wrinkles, texture, pores, acne scars and other skin imperfections.