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Sun Protection – Dark Spots

Sun protection is important. A little while ago, we wrote a blog post on hyperpigmentation– what causes it and what it means for your health? We received an overwhelming response to that article, so we wanted to follow it up with a deeper dive into dark spots: what treatment options are available and how you can address your uneven skin tone.

If you need a refresher on what hyperpigmentation is and what causes uneven skin tone, start with our past post. Then, read on here for a more in-depth look into the issue. We asked our in-house experts, Dr. Mittelman and Our Medical Aesthetician LeeAnn , to answer some of the most commonly asked questions we get about hyperpigmentation:

Can I get rid of the dark spots I have on my face?

One recommended option to treat dark spots and pigmentation is the use of prescription 4% hydroquinone, a tyrosinase inhibitor, which is found in products such as the Vivatia. A consultation with your skin care physician can help you decide which treatment plan is best for you.

 Should I consider an in-office treatment to help my hyperpigmentation?

Dr. Mittelman will know best which treatments may be right for your skin type. He will know whether in-office treatments, such as our IPL (Impulse Laser Light), Laser Genesis or chemical peels, may benefit your skin.

Can I spot-treat dark spots on my face?

Dr. Mittelman, during your consultation will discuss your specific treatment. Spot treating is not recommended.  Should you choose to spot treat, you may be only treating one area of hyperpigmentation on your skin, while other visible or non-visible pigmentation may be ignored?

Should I use hydroquinone in the summertime?

Many of our patients have reported using hydroquinone during different seasons, with great success. Dr. Mittelman can provide you with tips and tricks on how to help keep your unique skin healthy during the warm summer months or colder winter months. Dr. Mittelman can also help you learn how to incorporate your chosen skincare products and systems into your lifestyle.

What’s the #1 thing I can start doing today to help prevent any future skin discoloration or dark spots?

The number one thing you can do today to help prevent future skin discoloration is to wear a broad spectrum sunscreen, every single day, rain or shine. UVA (aging) rays can penetrate through clouds, haze, and most glass, so remembering to apply your sunscreen is your best defense for helping to prevent future pigmentation concerns. Elta Sun blocks has a wide variety of broad spectrum sunscreensto suit a variety of skin types and skin tones.

Sunscreen is a summer staple, as it’s one of your best protections against the aging and damaging effects of the powerful UV rays of the sun.

Shopping around for the right one though, may seem a little complicated. There are different SPF strengths, physical sunscreens, and chemical sunscreens.

How Do You Choose?

Instead of hopping from store to store, or site to site, Mittelman Plastic Surgery Center is your one stop shop when it comes to finding the right sunscreen for you. Not only do we offer a vast array for every skin type, we have written this blog to help you figure out which ones may be right for you!

If Your Skin Needs a Pick Me Up

You’ve probably never thought of sunscreen as a product to create a healthy-looking, glowing complexion while it protects, but with Elta’s tinted sunscreens, that’s just what you’ll get! Available in warm shades, tint Broad Spectrum SPF 50will provide broad spectrum protection against UVA and UVB rays as well as infrared defense, which helps to buffer the skin from heat-derived oxidative stress

We all love the warm summer sun! Unfortunately, the sun is also dangerous, and many of us underestimate just how harmful it really is. According to a 2011 Canadian Sun Care survey conducted by Nielsen among 5,000 households, nearly one-third of Canadians are not using sunscreen while outdoors, putting them at risk from the sun’s harmful rays.

Watch out for photo aging

Repeated sun exposure is the leading cause of premature skin aging. This is known as photoaging. It occurs because the sun’s ultraviolet rays alter the normal structure of the skin, causing the appearance of wrinkles and brown spots.

The signs of photoaging can generally be seen on sun-exposed areas, such as the face, neck and back of the hands. The damage it causes makes you look older than you are. Now that’s reason enough to always protect yourself from the sun!

Sun and cancer

Prolonged exposure to UV rays is also the leading cause of skin cancer, the most common form of cancer in Canada. According to Canadian Cancer Statistics 2015, the Canadian Cancer Association, the Public Health Agency of Canada and the various provincial and territorial cancer associations expect approximately 78,000 new non-melanoma cancer cases and 7,000 new cases of melanoma in 2015

The risk of skin cancer varies based on skin type and the amount of radiation to which a person has been exposed. Someone with fair skin and blond or red hair who burns easily will be at greater risk. The same is true of people who have a history of extensive sun exposure.

UVB and UVA rays

Two types of solar radiation – UVB and UVA – pose a threat to our skin and increase our risk of skin cancer. UVB rays are responsible for sunburns, while UVAs cause premature skin aging. Exposure to both types of radiation significantly increases the risk for skin cancer.

Remember that even on overcast days, UV rays reach our skin, since they penetrate clouds.

Sunscreen: Safe, effective protection 

The ADA’s (American Dermatological Association) position on sunscreen is clear: it is a safe, highly effective way to protect yourself from the damaging rays of the sun.  Over the years, there have been alarming stories regarding the use of sunscreen. Most of this information is not founded on scientific evidence.

To make sure the sunscreen you choose is a quality product that will provide proper protection from UVB and UVA rays, look for the ADA logo.

Keep in mind that staying in the shade, avoiding the sun between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. and wearing a hat and clothes that cover the body are other good habits to take when it comes to protecting you and your family.

Come in to Mittelman Plastic Surgery Center for a consultation with Dr. Mittelman or our Medical Aesthetician to determine which Elta Sun Protection product is best for you and your family.

Call us today at 650.941.8888

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“I have been going to Dr. Mittelman for various procedures since 1999. He is personable, easy to talk to and absolutely sane about what to do and when. I appreciate his calm advice as much as i do his surgical skills, which are_the best_ A special note about the staff – they are considerate and…”

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