Mole Removal Surgery

Mole Removal Surgery

People with freckles often loathe their appearance and wish that they would disappear from their skin. While they may not be the most pleasing of “imperfections”, freckles are harmless and do not pose health risks.

What are freckles?

Freckles are small and flat skin pigments that usually have a tanned or light brown appearance. On its own, the average freckle is the same size as the head of a pin but may look bigger if several freckles have overlapped.  Freckles can emerge after exposure to the sun and this can also make existing freckles look more pronounced.

There are two main type of freckles: ephelides and lentigines. Ephelides refer to flat marks that are red to light brown in color. They become more obvious in the summer but fade during the winter. Lentigines are darker in color (often tan, brown or black) and don’t fade in the winter.

How can freckles be prevented?

Taking preventative measures is one of the best ways to limit the occurrence of freckles. For example, use sunscreen with a high SPF, cover up exposed areas and stay out of the sun as much as possible. As freckles frequently crop up on the face, wear a wide-brimmed hat to limit how much sunlight can reach your face. Even a short period of exposure to the sun can be enough for new freckles to emerge. As well avoiding exposure to sunlight, you should also stay away from tanning beds as the UV radiation that you will be exposed to will encourage freckles to form.

Are freckles dangerous?

Unlike moles, freckles are unlikely to become cancerous but they are a sign that the skin has been damaged by the sun. Despite this, they pose not serious health risks and any decision to have them removed is usually for cosmetic reasons.

Can freckles be removed?

There are several options that can make freckles look less obvious. You may need to combine some of these methods to get the best results. Whichever treatment(s) you choose, it is still very important to limit your exposure to sunlight as new freckles will form otherwise.

Bleaching/fading creams: These can be bought over-the-counter, but any products containing more than 2% hydroquinone will require a prescription. They need to be applied over several months before freckles start to look noticeably lighter.

Cyrosurgery: This treatment involves lightly freezing freckles with liquid nitrogen. It will not be successful on all types of freckles but you shouldn’t experience scarring or discoloration.

Chemical peels: Chemical peels can improve the overall appearance of your skin by removing dead skin cells. Superficial chemical peels are kinder to the skin but as they do not offer an intense exfoliation experience, repeated treatments are needed to successfully make freckles look less noticeable. Deeper chemical peels are better in this respect as less treatments are needed, but there is a longer recovery time before your skin looks “normal” again.

Laser treatment: This is a safe and effective way to reduce the appearance of freckles. It is successful on a significant proportion of freckles and is unlikely to scar and discolor your skin. It will not work on everyone though, and this is worth bearing in mind as it can be expensive.

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