Our skin is a phenomenal defense system, however as we age, those defense systems age as well. Extrinsic factors such as UV exposure, pollution, and other lifestyle factors, as well as intrinsic processes, such as hormonal changes, can lead to a breakdown in cellular communication. This miscommunication can cause an over-stimulation of melanocytes (the areas of our skin that create pigment) and lead to brown spots and freckles, or even large patches of a medical condition called melasma. It can also lead to other processes being affected that slow or alter the cellular turnover of our skin. By addressing the cause and correcting the cellular processes of the skin, we can begin to clear the skin of any issues in its tone.
Treatment for issues with skin clarity and tone are excellent! There are a number of treatment options, and a plan will be created for each individual based on the issues they present with during consultation by the team at Ottawa Derm Centre. These treatments include:
– Chemical Peels
– At home skin care
– Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen!
We can all be candidates for this type of treatment throughout our lifetimes. As we age, skin tone issues will likely occur in one form or another. Depending on the type of skin tone problem, we can create a comprehensive skin health plan to give you clear, bright, glowing, and healthy skin.
Hyperpigmentation is a term used to describe skin that appears darker. It can cover large areas, occur in small patches, or affect the entire body. While hyperpigmentation is not usually harmful to your health, it can be a symptom of another health condition.
There are a number of different types of hyperpigmentation, the most common including:
- Sunspots (also known as liver spots): Are caused by an excessive amount of sun exposure over time. They usually appear as spots on areas that have been in the sun, such as the face and hands.
- Melasma: This condition is thought to be caused by hormonal changes, as it may develop during pregnancy. Areas of hyperpigmentation may appear on any area of the body, but are most common on the face and stomach.
- Post-inflammatory Pigmentation: This type of hyperpigmentation is caused by an injury or inflammation to the skin. A common example of this is acne.
In order to best diagnose and treat hyperpigmentation, a physical exam at our office is needed. There are a number of treatment options available, with some of the most common including:
Some cases of hyperpigmentation can be treated with prescription medications that usually contain hydroquinone, which lightens the skin. However, prolonged use of topical hydroquinone can cause darkening of the skin, so it is important to follow your dermatologist’s specific instructions regarding how to properly use this medication. Topical retinoids may also be used to lighten dark spots.
Taking certain precautions at home may also help to improve your hyperpigmentation. This includes using sunscreen daily that is at least an SPF of 30-50 with broad spectrum coverage. Also, be sure to cover your skin if you are spending time outdoors during peak hours of the sun, between 10 am and 4 pm.
Individuals who are bothered with the appearance of their hyperpigmentation can benefit from treatment. In some cases, dark areas will fade on their own with good sun protection. However, if you have stubborn areas of hyperpigmentation, more aggressive treatments may be required. The best way to determine if you are a good candidate for hyperpigmentation treatment is through a consultation with one of our dermatologists. During this meeting, an assessment of your skin will allow for a proper diagnosis, and a treatment plan can be created.
Redness can occur for a variety of reasons on the face. When redness becomes a chronic condition, it can often be categorized as rosacea or referred to as vascular abnormalities from blood vessels that have become visible on the face. We can help you find relief with a variety of treatment options after an examination by our team at Ottawa Derm Centre.
The treatment option that is right for you will depend on the cause of your redness, whether it is diagnosed as rosacea or vascular lesions. Our team will work with you to determine the best plan for you and your condition. Some of the most common treatment options for vascular lesions include:
Medication: Several topical therapies exist, both over the counter and by prescription, to help redness symptoms.
Surgery: Excision is sometimes required, which often requires removal with a margin of normal skin.
Laser Therapy: There are several laser treatments that can help improve some vascular lesions. These lasers may include Erbium YAG lasers, Pulsed-Dye lasers, CO2 lasers, BroadBand Light therapy (BBL), or Intense Pulsed Light therapy (IPL).
Individuals with redness can benefit from treatment. The best way to properly diagnose and treat your redness is to schedule a consultation appointment at our office, during which one of our dermatologists can assess your skin.