In this brief guide, we’ll address the query: “Can you freeze age spots?” Also, we’ll explore how age spots are treated, what age spots are, and what to do if you have age spots.
Can you freeze age spots?
Age spots can be frozen, in the sense that they can be removed by a specialist (usually a dermatologist) who uses a procedure called cryotherapy to restore some of the skin’s original pigment using low temperatures.
However, this is done using extremely low temperatures such as those found in liquid nitrogen, and should only be done by licensed, certified experts.
Attempting this at home may lead to injuries that may, later on, require medical treatment and healing. We advise our readers to consult with a medical professional and not attempt any at-home variations of this therapy.
How are age spots treated?
Age spots can be treated in a variety of ways, including:
- Cryotherapy (freeze therapy) – In this procedure, a dermatologist will expose the age spots to very low temperatures. This will have a damaging effect on the pigment in the spotted cells, but once the skin heals, it will have a more restored tone.
This treatment may cause some discomfort such as swelling, blistering, or irritation, but these symptoms should subside within days of the procedure.
Cryotherapy is ideally performed by a licensed dermatologist to prevent permanent damage such as scarring or discoloration of the lesion.
- Laser treatment – consists in using a laser to remove the upper layers of skin, namely, the pigmented cells. Similar to how a tattoo is removed, The intense light penetrates these cells and scatters the pigments, restoring the original coloration during the healing process.
While this procedure rarely has any lasting side-effects, the skin may appear slightly darker for a few days, and there may be some redness on or around the spots.
- Microdermabrasion – a procedure that consists in removing the pigmented skin cells by -smoothing- them away. Ideally, this procedure works best when it follows a chemical peel, though it may cause some mild swelling and crusting around the lesions.
However, these side effects are temporary, and when combined with a chemical peeling, the results are reputed to be satisfactory.
- Chemical peeling – chemical peelings consist in applying a chemical solution (usually a very weak acid) to the skin and letting it corrode the top skin cells. This is a controlled injury, and when done by a medical professional, following procedure guidelines, there should be no lasting damage.
The principle behind it is to remove the top layer of skin and give way to a younger, renewed layer.
It should only be done by a licensed medical professional, who will determine the correct chemical to apply, as different chemicals have varying strengths and may lead to different results.
- Topic treatments – these include creams and ointments that may be prescribed by a specialist, or bought in drugstores, over the counter.
Usually, they’re effective when treating early onsets of age spots, though some formulations may not yield the desired effect at all.
We recommend our readers consult with a certified dermatologist, who’ll help determine whether age spots merit topic treatment.
What are age spots?
Age spots, also known as liver spots, solar lentigines, and lentigo senilis, allude to discolorations of the skin that may appear on a person’s hands, neck and face. They are flat and can be blackish, brownish, greyish, or yellowish in color.
They’re usually associated with age, though young people that are often exposed to solar radiation may get them as well.
They’re caused by a buildup of melanin (skin pigment) in skin cells, and the exact cause of them is still unknown, although there does seem to be a hereditary component to their onset.
Possible causes may include damage to the skin, as inflicted by ultraviolet exposure, sunlight, tanning beds, etc.
Age spots are usually round, with defined edges, and don’t alter the texture of a person’s skin. They may darken over time and usually start out as yellowish in color.
Weatherbeaten skin may have larger-sized age spots, and they can vary in size from a few milimeters to one inch.
What should I do if I have age spots?
If our readers suspect they have age spots or any other skin condition of concern, we advise them to first consult with a licensed medical professional.
A board-certified dermatologist will correctly diagnose any skin conditions and discard other conditions such as skin cancer or keratoses, and provide guidance, as well as tailored treatment.
Outpatient procedures may be necessary, and should always be performed by a medical professional, to avoid damage such as lesions and burns that may require further medical treatment.
We advise our readers never to self-medicate and to never attempt any removal procedures at home.
In this brief guide, we’ve addressed the query: “Can you freeze age spots?” Also, we’ve explored how age spots are treated, what age spots are, and what to do if you have age spots.