It seems very unfair… a natural sun-kissed tan makes us look healthy and glowing. And a bit of warmth on our faces simply makes us feel good.
However, the effects of sun exposure on your skin can be ageing and at worst, devastating.
While some of the damage is merely cosmetic, it can of course be more serious and any concerns should be raised as early as possible to ensure quick treatment.
Sun damage accumulates slowly over time, so for many of us, it is risking a lower sun factor protection in our youth or popping out without sunblock early or late season that contributes to sun damage.
Signs of Sun Damage
Signs of sun damage can include:
- Uneven pigmentation
- Sun Spots
- Liver spots
- Age spots
- Premature ageing (lines, wrinkles, loose skin, sagging) – caused by elastosis, the break down of elastic tissue within the skin
- Melasma (also known as chloasma or pregnancy mask)
- Pre-cancerous and cancerous cell carcinoma and melanoma, caused by loss of the skin’s immune function
- Sallowness (yellow pigmentation)
- Facial veins/thread veins/spider veins
- Dry skin, poor complexion
- Rough or “weathered” skin texture
Treatment for Sun Damage
The good news is, modern aesthetic medicine offers a number of treatments which can help to treat and improve even the most sun-damaged skin.
Treatments to Heal and Improve the Skin:
- Dermaroller micro-needling, to boost the skin’s own regeneration, promoting collagen production for smoother, tighter skin; while also tackling pigmentation
- Skin peels, for intensive exfoliation, erasing fine lines and stimulating the skin’s regeneration
- IPL laser treatment for facial veins and skin tightening
- Obagi NuDerm System® – medically supervised skincare to tackle sun damage
- Facial vein treatment either via laser or injection
Treatments to Tackle Lines and Wrinkles:
- Botox anti-wrinkle injections, to soften lines and creases
- Fillers to gently plump out deeper wrinkles and lines
Preventing Sun Damage
A few simple steps will help to minimise the effects of sun damage. These are important both as a prevention and also after treatment, to prevent reocurrence of sun damage:
- Avoid the sun at peak times. The sun is at its strongest from 11-4
- Beware cloudy days – 80% of harmful UV can pass through clouds
- Wear appropriate clothing – e.g. wide brimmed hat, shirt with collar
- Wear a good sunblock with a minimum SPF30 when outside