Brown spots show up on our faces as we age due to cumulative sun damage. The more ultraviolet radiation you’ve had from sun exposure the more brown spots you will get. Larger brown batches called melasma come from a combination of sun exposure and hormone effects from pregnancy or birth control pills. Melasma can be difficult to treat and has a tendency to recur. The medical term for these conditions is hyperpigmentation.
The first step in treating excess pigmentation issues can be summed up in three words: use sunscreen religiously. Even 20 or 30 minutes in the sun without sunscreen can cause brown spots to darken. We recommend a broad-spectrum sunscreen with micronized physical blockers of zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. The Elta MD® line of sunscreens is a favorite among our doctors and other providers.
The next step is a good skin care regimen with active ingredients which will lighten the hyperpigmentation. Our go-to regimens are Obagi® NuDerm and Obagi-C® Rx. We have seen consistently excellent results with these systems in just 12 weeks among our medical and cosmetic center and spa clients as well as with patients in studies we’ve conducted in our Center for Skin Research. Seeing is believing with these regimens, and we have a program by that name where one of our patient care coordinators, aestheticians or nurses will stay and consult with you every step of the way. Seeing Is Believing is a 16-week, 3-visit program combining VISIA® photographic Complexion Analysis, expert advice and a tailored regimen for your skin type and hyperpigmentation issues that includes product discounts and free products.
For those of you who want to speed up the improvement process, we have a variety of in-office procedure options available. Ranging from mildest to strongest, they include chemical peels, intense pulse light (IPL) treatments and laser procedures. Two our favorite lasers for outing brown spots are the Clear + Brilliant® and Fraxel® Dual. Clear + Brilliant is targeted for mild hyperpigmentation while the Fraxel Dual is excellent for moderate to more severe hyperpigmentation. Both offer additional anti-aging benefits, and both are October specials. Schedule your consultation today with one of our dermatologists or other skin care experts to start on your own path to clear, more radiant skin.
If you would like to learn more sign up for our Power Lunch on October 17th. I will be presenting, along with Dr. Ali, more information about the condition and treatment options. Look forward to seeing you there!
Dr. Suzanne Bruce