Photodamage Treatment in Gainesville, FL
Most people have heard that regular, unprotected exposure to the sun can cause skin cancer. However, they may not know the extent to which the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays can damage the skin, even without developing cancer. This damage is identified as photodamage. If you want solutions to help reverse effects of photodamage, schedule an appointment with our Gainesville dermatology experts today.
What is Photodamage?
Photodamage is a form of premature aging, also called extrinsic aging. It usually occurs from long-term exposure to harmful and damaging ultraviolet rays from the sun. UV radiation damages the skin’s fibers, resulting in loss of collagen and elasticity, in turn causing wrinkles and other forms of skin damage like sun spots and uneven skin texture. While aging is a normal part of growing older, the effect of photodamage can exacerbate and speed up the visible aging process in skin and can be difficult to reverse without professional services from a dermatologist in Gainesville.
Three Categories of Photodamage
While photodamage can appear differently on each person, it usually falls into one of three categories.
- Color: Photodamage can result in discoloration of the skin, either in a large portion or small area.
- Dermal: Dermal photodamage affects the top layers of the skin, primarily to skin fibers, destroying collagen in the process. These effects are cosmetic in nature and easily noticeable.
- Epidermal: Epidermal photodamage affects layers deeper in the skin, and can potentially develop into cancer if left untreated.
Signs of Photodamage
Photodamage appears differently on every person. While most commonly visible on the face, photodamage can occur to all parts of the body that have been exposed to the sun for long periods of time. These are the seven of the most common signs of photodamage on the skin:
- Visible or broken blood vessels
- Liver spots or sun spots
- Sagging skin
- Wrinkles, including deep wrinkles or the presence of many wrinkles
- Pebbling of the skin and other changes to skin texture
- Presence of spots and large amounts of freckles
- Long term skin darkening