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Age Spots: Why They Appear, and How To Treat Them

Age Spots are brown or black blemishes on the skin, appearing due to the natural aging process or sun exposure.

Age Spots: Why They Appear, and How To Treat Them

Written by Dr. Dmitriy Timerman

Age spots, also known as liver spots or solar lentigines, are flat, brown or black spots that can appear on the skin in patients aged about 50 years and older.  Although these spots can form because of the natural aging process, they are most often attributed to sun exposure—commonly appearing in areas of the skin that are regularly exposed to the sun, such as the face, hands, arms, and shoulders.

It is always important to have any new or changing spots on the skin evaluated by a dermatologist to rule out skin cancer, but in general, these spots tend to be harmless.  For patients who do find themselves self-conscious about the appearance of their spots, especially in highly-visible areas including the hands, it is important to know that there are options for effectively diminishing and managing the spots’ appearance.

One way to treat age spots is through the use of topical treatments.  Your skincare specialist may prescribe a cream effective at lightening or reducing the visibility of your age spots over time, or over-the-counter creams & lotions containing ingredients such as Retinol, Vitamin C, and Hydroquinone may prove helpful as well.  It is important to note that these treatments can take several weeks or months to show results and should be used consistently as directed by a healthcare professional.

Other options for patients include cosmetic procedures, which can range from micro-needling to laser therapy, to chemical peels and cryotherapy.  These treatments are more invasive than topical solutions and may require downtime for healing, so it’s critical to discuss the risks and benefits of these procedures with a healthcare professional to determine the best option for your individual case.

Prevention can be key when it comes to age spots.  On areas like the hands, wearing protective clothing, such as long sleeves and gloves, and applying sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 30 can help prevent the formation of new spots.  It is also important to avoid tanning beds and limit sun exposure as much as possible during peak hours (typically between 10 am and 4 pm).

In conclusion, age spots on the skin are a common and generally harmless cosmetic concern.  While they can be treated with topical creams and cosmetic procedures, prevention can prove most effective in reducing the risk of new age spot formation.  If you are concerned about age spots on your hands or any other area of the skin, it is important to consult with a healthcare professional for proper evaluation and treatment options—speak to a Dermatology specialist at Advanced Specialty Care today by calling us or requesting your appointment online.

Dmitriy Timerman, M.D.

Dr. Timerman is a board-certified dermatologist who sees adult & pediatric patients in Danbury, CT.

Call (203) 830-4700 to schedule an appointment with one of our Dermatology specialists at any of our convenient office locations in DanburyNew MilfordNorwalk, Ridgefield, or Stamford, CT.

Advanced Specialty Care’s Dermatology practice is welcoming and patient-centered, specializing in all of your family’s skincare needs from head-to-toe.  Our board-certified Dermatologists excel in general medical, surgical and cosmetic dermatology for patients of all ages, with expertise which allows them to not only diagnose and treat complex skin conditions, but also improve the appearance and condition of the skin.

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