5 Factors that are Caused Age Spots or Sun Spots
There are 5 main factors that cause hyper-pigmentation that usually called age spots, sun spots, brown spots or dark spots.
The sun is the major cause of hyper-pigmentation They are sometimes known as liver spots, senile lentigo, solar lentigines, or sun spots because they are caused by many years of sun exposure or the use of tanning beds. UV directly stimulates the protection of melanin. Melanin is your body’s way of protecting itself from UV. Although melanin helps protect the deeper layers of the skin from UV rays, it can be produced in high concentrations or become “clumped”, thus causing age spots. These sunspots or brown spots are not dangerous and can easily be removed.
2- Irritation, Inflammation & Trauma
Have you noticed a dark spot after a healing pimple or discoloration from a scar? This is post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation or brown spots. Irritation to the skin can cause inflammation. DNA damage caused by inflammation activates the genes for melanin production. The injury causes an increase in pigmentation and scarring.
Irritation can come from many sources – too much pressure (from a massage or incorrect extraction technique), skin trauma or wounds, unprofessional laser treatments, over-exfoliation, even spicy foods and inflammatory diseases such as eczema.
Changes in the balance of reproductive hormones (estrogen, progesterone) and stress hormones can cause hyper-pigmentation. This is the hardest kind to treat because there is a ‘hidden’ factor behind the hyper-pigmentation or brown spots.
Certain chemicals can trigger a melanocyte to produce melanin. Artificial fragrance is a big one. Oxidized ingredients also cause brown spots. Pure Vitamin C is a perfect example – it oxidizes extremely fast unless it has been correctly formulated (hard to find).
Certain drugs (anti-malarial, cancer, others), as well as heavy metals, may cause dark spots too.
If melanin is produced in high concentrations or becomes “clumped”, they form age spots or brown spots. These dark spots are not dangerous and can be removed.
Sunscreens help to filter out ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Ultraviolet radiation (UVR) may cause age spots, dark spots, wrinkles, sagging as well as cancer.
Methods of age spots and sun spots removal at Nell Laser Clinic:
- Cauterization – Sun spots can be burned off using elector-cauterization device.
- Laser or IPL – is usually used for removing age spots and sunspots.
- Chemical peels series of treatments gradually fades hyper-pigmentation
- Microdermabrasion series of treatments gradually fades sun spots.
Electrocautery is a procedure that uses light electrical current to burn age spots and sunspots off. Approximately 1-2 treatments may be needed. Local anesthetic is applied to the treated area before the procedure. Electrocautery is easier to perform and control, so it can be safer, and more efficient.
Laser or IPL is usually used for removing burn age spots and sunspots. This method of hyper-pigmentation removal may require up to 6 treatments to make the brown spots invisible. The laser beam or pulsed light is selectively absorbed by the pigment of the skin, which is then destroyed and shed away.