What are Freckles?
Freckles are little brown spots on the skin that are caused by the sun. We all have pigment-producing cells in our skin called melanocytes. These melanocytes produce melanin pigment and feed it to keratinocytes, the normal skin cells that form the outer barrier of our skin.This barrier protects us from the insults of nature, and importantly, from the sun. This pigment prevents us from being damaged by the sun’s powerful rays. When our melanocytes become damaged by the sun, we produce freckles, which are simply abnormal collections of melanin pigment in the skin.
And the Culprit is…
The Sun! Freckles are a way our skin tells us: “Hey, I’m getting damaged by the sun!” When the melanocytes in the skin get damaged by the sun, we produce freckles which are abnormal collections of melanin pigment, packaged in a different way than a normal melanin pigment is packaged. They sit on the top layer of our skin which is called the epidermis.
Yes, tanning will always make freckles get worse. Lying in the sun is really what makes freckles become worse. Going in the sun a lot during the period when you’re getting treated for freckles with laser also makes it much more difficult for the treatment to work.
Consult with a Doctor
A dermatologist should look at any spotting you plan to have removed to ensure that no precancerous lesions are partially removed, which can make it very difficult to diagnose them later. Any unusual freckles or brown spots, including those in unusual locations on the body, should be reviewed by a dermatologist prior to treatment. They can then offer you a treatment plan to remove the freckles once they have determined you can safely have the freckles removed.