Although age spots are usually benign and do not require treatment, many people choose to treat their age spots in some way each year. The most common treatment for age spots is actually not a proper treatment at all, but the use of concealing make-up. Especially in the face there are many creams that can reliably cover the disturbing spots on the face.
However, there are also therapeutic options that allow the spots to be removed. One of these therapies is laser therapy. With the help of the laser the stains can be removed.
The laser beams burst the pigmentation in the skin and reliably remove it. In any case, and especially with this therapy, it should be clarified first that the changes are benign. The implementation of laser therapy for malignant skin cancer, for example, could lead to malignant cells spreading and, in the worst case, the cancer could metastasize so easily.
There are also numerous creams that can bleach the skin and thus also bleach the troublesome spots. The combination of the active agents hydroquinone, tretinoin and hydrocortisone, which is allowed in Germany, can cause this bleaching of the skin. It is important to note that this cream should not be used for a long period of time as the skin will be damaged.
The cream, which falls into the category of “skin whitening”, is available in most pharmacies in Germany. There are several ways to permanently remove age spots on the face. Before removing them, however, a dermatologist should generally determine that they are indeed benign age spots and not, for example, a skin tumour.
Since age spots are not dangerous and usually disturb the patient aesthetically, the treatment must be paid for by the patient. Which method is used for removal is discussed individually with the treating doctor. Various methods are available: The most frequently used technique is laser treatment, which is described in more detail above.
Furthermore, age spots can also be removed surgically. A chemical peeling can also be used to treat age spots. Fruit acid, for example, is suitable for this purpose, as it removes the uppermost layer of skin, whereupon a new, lighter skin layer is formed.
Bleaching creams are a further therapy option. In only rare cases a dermabrasion (scraping off the upper skin layers with a grinding instrument) or a cold treatment (icing of the affected skin area with liquid nitrogen) is used to remove age spots on the face. However, since these methods are often accompanied by scarring, they are no longer the methods of choice.
In general, adequate sun protection is essential after almost every treatment and to prevent the formation of new age spots. Laser treatment is the most targeted therapy against age spots on the face. The laser (ruby laser, YAG laser) generates a high-energy light.
This light is sent in pulses to the affected skin areas, which destroys the pigments of the upper skin layer. During the treatment, the patient feels the sensation of several pinpricks on the skin. The procedure is therefore relatively painless and is usually performed without anaesthesia.
In most cases there are no scars and the treated skin areas heal after a few weeks. Irritated skin may occur after the laser treatment. Sometimes the treated areas can also swell.
In most cases one treatment session is sufficient. In the case of larger areas that are to be treated, several sessions may be necessary, which can take place at intervals of about 8 weeks. As the skin has to be protected against UV radiation for several months after the treatment, a therapy in the winter months is recommended.
Creams for the treatment of age spots on the face are so-called bleaching creams. These are available in pharmacies and can be applied to the affected skin areas at home without the doctor’s supervision. Bleaching creams contain, for example, vitamin C which can lighten the skin.
However, the treatment with bleaching creams is very long. It can take weeks to months until the first results are visible. In addition, patients have to make sure that only the darker skin areas are covered with the creams as the surrounding areas also become lighter.
In some cases, allergic reactions to the ingredients can occur, which can cause redness or even itching. Household remedies usually only lighten the age spots on the face, so that these usually do not disappear completely. In addition, household remedies must be used several times a day to achieve an effect.
Nevertheless, they can be a cheap alternative to the other treatments. For one thing, lemon juice is considered a common household remedy. It is applied to the affected skin areas several times a day.
The acid removes the outer layer of skin including pigments and thus lightens the skin. Aloe vera gel can also reduce age spots on the face. This plant stimulates the new formation of cells and accelerates the removal of old skin cells.
A mixture of ginger powder, rose petals and powdered bedstraw, which is applied to the age spots several times a day, can also lighten the dark areas of the skin by means of the acids it contains (e.g. citric acid or rubichloric acid). A homeopathic treatment of age spots can support the lightening process, e.g. when using home remedies for age spots on the face. The homeopathic remedies can be taken either as globules, drops or tablets. In the case of age spots, it is generally recommended to take potassium sulfuricum (potassium sulfate) or sarsaparilla (sarsaparilla), which have a brightening effect on age spots.