Age spots are simply an area of flat brownish skin discolorations found on skin throughout the body. They are unlikely to go away overnight. But it can be treated naturally with time and consistent effort.
Age spots may occur in clusters or alone and they are referred to as liver spots and solar lentigines. Solar lentigines are age spots which are caused by sun exposure. Age spots commonly appear on areas of the body that are exposed to sunlight for a prolonged time like the hands, face, shoulders, and arms.
Age spots may appear in younger individuals depending on the amount of sun exposure received over a period of time. Only a physician can determine whether the spot on the skin is a harmless age spot or if it’s harmful skin cancer. A biopsy of an age spot may be taken to rule out cancer as it's a procedure that entails the removal of and testing of a small piece of the affected skin.
For preventing age spots, sunscreens are very helpful; they help block ultraviolet rays produced by the sun. When the skin is unprotected, UV rays accelerate the production of melanin in the skin. Melanin is a dark pigment in the epidermis that gives skin its colour. To prevent the skin from harmful UV rays, the production of melanin increases. This increase in melanin production causes the skin to tan in the sun. Abnormally high concentrations of melanin clumped together to form a dark spot, such as an age spot.
Although age spots are harmless, many people opt to remove them through various treatments like bleaching, dermabrasion, cryotherapy, chemical skin peels, and laser removal. The treatments are expensive and physically unpleasant, so it is usually recommended to go for proactive prevention to avoid age spots. Proactive prevention includes the use of broad-spectrum sunscreens, as well as avoiding sun exposure during high-intensity hours.
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