Ephelides or freckles are an extremely common anomaly. They are discrete, collected or perhaps confluent-pigmented macules that are triggered due to an increased, localized production of melanin. The actual size of the freckle, however, differs. It could be anywhere in between the size of a pinhead or a split pea.
Freckles develop symmetrically on top of the exposed areas of the body such as the face, neck area as well as forearms; however, if other areas of the body are exposed, for instance during sunbathing or perhaps while wearing sleeveless cloths, they might also get affected. Individuals with sensitive, fair skin tend to be more vulnerable to freckles. Dark-skinned individuals rarely develop freckles.
Freckles are tanned macules located on the skin and are generally multiple in numbers. Due to exposure to the sun, they become a lot more apparent hence, during the winter months, they are usually imperceptible. Though freckles are mostly benign, they could be viewed in connections to systemic diseases.
Although, freckles are considered to be cute by some, they tend to be a real problem for some individuals. Freckles, also referred to as ephelides, appear during the early years in life, they increase in numbers during the summer season and fade during winter months.
Individuals that happen to be genetically vulnerable could possibly have somatic mutations within epidermal melanocytes, which promote elevated melanogenesis. Melanocytes aren’t increased in numbers. In fact, they might even end up decreasing in number. Using exposure to UV-A and UV-B, the dopa reaction is increased, resulting in the development of larger melanosomes that generate the clinical picture.
What are the Causes for Freckles?
Environmental factors: With regard to people who are vulnerable, exposure to both UV-A as well as UV-B radiation causes freckles, as these stimulate melanocytes in order to create melanin.
Genetic factors: Freckles are usually inherited as an autosomal dominant characteristic. Ephelides are most commonly seen in people who have fair complexion and/or blond or red hair.
Xeroderma pigmentosum: Freckles tend to be prominent as well as dark in heterozygous carriers due to this autosomal recessive ailment. Increased freckling amongst dark-haired people indicates a possibility of this particular ailment.
Complications with Regards to Freckles:
Freckles could be cosmetically unsightly. However, they are not connected with any kind of complications. Nevertheless, recent studies have demonstrated that people that have skin types that are vulnerable to freckles tend to be at a higher risk of developing cancer of the skin. This is simply because freckles as well as skin cancers are often a lot more common in individuals who are frequently exposed to direct sunlight and possess skin types I and II as compared to other individuals.
Common Tips to help Get Rid of Freckles:
Some of the most effective techniques in order to get rid of freckles are listed below:
Bleaching creams – Products that contain hydroquinone along with Kojic acid can be bought without any prescription. A higher concentration of hydroquinone (over 2%) requires a prescription. These kinds of products can easily lighten freckles when they are applied consistently over a couple of months.
Cryosurgery – A light freeze along with liquid nitrogen could be used to treat freckles.
Tretinoin – At times used in combination with various other bleaching creams, Tretinoin helps to lighten freckles when used over a period of time.
Laser treatment – Many lasers, particularly the ones that generate a green light are able to lighten as well as eliminate freckles in a safe and effective manner. Similar to cryosurgery, this procedure is safe and enjoys a significant success rate in addition to a low risk of scarring.
Conventional Methods for Getting Rid of Freckles:
Conventional treatment procedures for freckles comprise of aesthetic cover-ups as well as bleaching creams. Neither of these products has garnered effective outcomes. Bleaching agents make an attempt to lighten the freckles to a color that is just about the same as that of the surrounding skin color.
However, sometimes they lighten or darken the skin that surrounds the freckles, calling a whole lot more attention towards the spots. At times, bleaching agents are known to result in rashes or perhaps chemical burns. Some individuals have experienced excellent results by using alpha hydroxy acids on a consistent basis, coupled with avoiding direct sunlight and the use of sunscreen. A lot of dermatologists highly recommend the use of retinoids that are intended for the treatment of freckles.
More contemporary treatment procedures for lightening freckles consist of freezing them with the help of liquid nitrogen, as well as the use of strong acid peels or perhaps ablative laser treatments that are also made use of in order to treat wrinkles and fine lines. Freezing, chemical peels as well as ablative laser treatments, although more effective as compared to conventional treatment options, could damage healthy skin, result in scarring in addition to demanding extended recovery times.
The freckle color varies from a light-brown color to dark-brown color, fading whenever the skin is protected against direct sunlight. Due to this, freckles tend to be most obvious during the Indian winter as well as the continental summer. They don’t develop on the palms and the soles of the feet and neither do they grow to be malignant. They start to show up round about the age of seven and eight and might persist throughout life.
Laser Treatment for Removal of Freckles:
During the past it was hard to get rid of freckles because the skin lesions are so small. However, with modern day aesthetic laser treatments, such lesions can be pinpointed to microscopic details. The advantages of the more sophisticated laser systems would be that the laser energy is absorbed precisely by the color of the freckle, preventing damage to the surrounding skin. This is desirable, especially on the facial area.
Designed in order to treat superficial brown spots, the laser treatment for the removal of freckles can also be effective in getting rid of various other brown spots such as café au lait patches, flat pigmented moles, Nevus of Ota and Nevus of Ito. Some types of pigmentation in certain melasma do not show an improvement in response to any type of laser treatment.
How does Laser Treatment for Freckle Removal Work?
During the laser treatment, the cells that contain excessive concentrations of pigment absorb energy coming from the laser and normal tissues do not absorb them – hence the Laser stimulates the body to eradicate the excessive pigment whilst having little or no affect on other tissues or normal skin color.
In case the area to be treated possesses a fresh sun tan or perhaps has been treated using a self-tanning lotion, it’s always best to wait for a couple of weeks so that the tan can fade prior to undergoing treatment, since the tan would absorb and waste part of the laser energy that is meant for treating the pigmented lesion. A fresh sun tan or perhaps color from a recent application of self-tanning lotion can also absorb a sufficient amount of laser energy to enhance the risk of blistering or skin irritation.
Using a laser, the doctor is now able to eliminate or lighten a majority of freckles, dark spots, birthmarks, as well as spider veins. Blemishes that are present on the top layers of the skin, for instance freckles and spider veins, can quite often be eliminated in just a single treatment.
Laser treatment is fast and is performed in the doctor’s clinic. Patient’s can most probably return home straight after the procedure. In order to keep you comfortable, you could be administered with local anesthesia or perhaps a mild sedation just before treatment. The doctor may even numb the skin with the help of ice or an anesthetic ointment. The doctor will provide instructions with regards to taking care of the skin following treatment. Make sure to adhere to the instructions properly.
Laser treatment can rapidly get rid off freckles, age spots, moles and cafe au lait spots that are not deep or malignant. Following treatment, the area will become dark and might form a crust. This crust drops off in around 10-14 days. This results in a pink colored spot, which gradually fades to the normal skin tone. You should wear a good sunscreen lotion until the skin completely heals.