Sun Damage


Overexposure to the sun's harmful rays may lead to sun damaged skin in some individuals. There are several possible symptoms of sun damage spanning from cosmetic blemishes to more serious conditions like skin cancer. Treatment for sun damaged skin depends on which symptoms are present. Most patients are able to treat mild sunburns with over-the-counter products like aloe or creams. Cosmetic symptoms like fine lines, wrinkles, age spots, etc. may require laser resurfacing, intense pulsed light therapies, chemical peels and other cosmetic treatments.

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An Overview Of Sun Damage
Sun damage of the skin, also known as photo damage can be either acute, as in a sunburn or more commonly, chronic, seen as gradual changes in the skin caused by an accumulation of sun exposure throughout one's life. Chronic photo damage results in either a cosmetic change in the skin's appearance called photo aging, or changes that are of medical and health concerns such as pre-cancerous lesions and skin cancers. The evidence is very strong that ultra-violet light is the cause of most of the changes that we consider to be associated with aging of the skin.

What Does Sun Damaged Skin Look Like?
Fine and coarse wrinkles are seen on sun damaged skin. There is a roughness to the skin and a laxity or looseness in advanced damage, patchy or mottled darker patches of increased pigmentation are seen also. Sometimes these patches become irregular and produce what are known as lentigos. In areas around the back of the neck a leathery texture and coarseness with deep lines is frequently seen, the skin may feel dry and scaly. Chronic sun exposure will in many produce a thickened layer in the upper dermis known as solar elastosis, which gives a yellowish chicken skin look.

Protecting Your Skin From Sun Damage
Sun avoidance and regular sunscreen use are widely promoted by organizations and individuals interested in skin cancer prevention. A sunburn is caused by exposing your skin to too much ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun, that is, lightwaves that measure approximately 200-400nm.
Questions answered about how much sunscreen to apply and how often, what is SPF?, the sun and cancer as well as sunscreen use for childdren and the elderly.
Sun damage or photo damage produces both skin cancers as well as photo-aging ...

Treatment For Sun Damaged Skin
There are a number of products and treatments available to try to reverse some of the signs of sun damage. The use of products containing alpha hydroxy acids such as glycolic acid and lactic acid may have a smoothing effect on the skin. We also know that vitamin C preparations will also have modest effects on reversing the appearance of sun damage