Moles, Freckles, and Skin Tags
How Are Lentigines Treated?
There are several methods for treating lentigines:
- Cryosurgery (freezing it off)
- Laser surgery
- Creams that are applied to the skin but doesn't permanently remove lentigines. These include retinoids and bleaching agents.
Can Lentigines Be Prevented?
The best way to prevent lentigines is to stay out of the sun as much as possible, especially between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Use a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more when outdoors, and wear protective clothing, such as long-sleeved shirts, pants, and a wide-brimmed hat. Avoid using tanning beds.
Freckles and Your Skin
Freckles are small brown spots usually found on the face and arms. Freckles are extremely common and are not a health threat. They are more often seen in the summer, especially among lighter-skinned people and people with light or red hair.
What Causes Freckles?
Causes of freckles include genetics and exposure to the sun.
Do Freckles Need to Be Treated?
Since freckles are almost always harmless, there really is no need to treat them. As with many skin conditions, it's best to avoid the sun as much as possible, or use a sunscreen with SPF 50 or higher. This is especially important because people who freckle easily (for example, lighter-skinned people) are more likely to develop skin cancer.
If you feel that your freckles are a problem or you don't like the way they look, you can cover them up with makeup or consider certain types of laser treatment.
Seborrheic Keratoses and Your Skin
Seborrheic keratoses are brown or black growths usually found on the chest and back, as well as on the head. They originate from cells called keratinocytes. As they develop, seborrheic keratoses take on a warty appearance. They do not lead to skin cancer.
What Causes Seborrheic Keratoses?
The cause of seborrheic keratoses is unknown. They are seen more often as people get older.
How Are Seborrheic Keratoses Treated?
Seborrheic keratoses are harmless and are not contagious. Therefore, they don't need to be treated.
If you decide to have seborrheic keratoses removed because you don't like the way they look, or because they are chronically irritated by clothing, methods for removing them include cutting them off, cryosurgery, and electrosurgery.