Is laser treatment a permanent solution for freckles?
Since my secondary days, due to genes and exposure to sunlight, my face is quite prone to freckles developing and darkening. I have tried lightening cream from pharmacy as well as went to beauty salons before. Not too long ago, I went to National Skin Centre pharmacy to buy the cream there directly too. Tried home remedies before too but skin is smoothened only. The problems are also that when the freckles issues see improvements after my efforts, somehow the root problem stay. They will come back again. Is laser a confirmed one-time solution to it? My facial skin texture only has this problem and no others.
Dear Ching Tan,
Yes, freckles start developing in your teens and do get darker.
Using sunscreen is essential to prevent them from darkening, increasing in numbers and recurring. Sunscreen has to be applied every 2 – 4 hourly.
Pigment lasers are used to remove these freckles, however they might require 1 – 3 sessions of laser treatments. Of course, diligent sunscreen application after laser treatments helps to prevent recurrence. Thanks.
Hi Poh Ching Tan,
It is true that development of freckles is dependant on genetic factors and environmental factors especially sun exposure.
Even before considering treatment, it is important for you to avoid excessive sun exposure as this can aggravate the freckles and also increase the risk of recurrence if you go for treatment. Regular use of sunscreens will be helpful.
If your pigmentation is due to freckles, they do usually respond well to pigment laser treatment. It may generally take between 1 to 3 treatments but there is no guarantee that it will clear with a single treatment. Freckles respond well to IPL (Intense Pulse Light) treatment too. This has less down-time but may require more treatment sessions.
Hi Ching Tan,
Pigmentation is a complex problem requiring proper diagnosis and a treatment plan from a doctor.
Different types of pigmentation respond to different treatments. These include creams, chemical peels and lasers. Different lasers are also indicated for different pigmentation. A course of treatments is usually needed, depending on your skin condition.
There is NO confirmed one-time solution for pigmentation, whatever the modality of treatment.
Hi Ching Tan,
It is true that freckles are related to genetic factors and can be aggravated by excessive sun exposure.
The best way to remove freckles is with pigmentation lasers (eg Q-switched Nd Yag laser).
You can expect downtime of redness of 1 day followed by dry scabbing for 5-7 days, with a couple of laser sessions. This downtime can be readily concealed, so you can still resume your daily activities.
Sun protection measures before and after the laser sessions are equally important for sustainable results, otherwise the freckles can slowly recur.
So I would recommend you to speak to an experienced doctor in treating pigmentations with lasers to discuss on the most suitable treatment options for you.
If you are keen for more detailed information on treatments of freckles (including photos of the expected downtime) and also other common types of pigmentations, you can find out more in my "Ultimate Guide to Pigmentation Treatment in Singapore".
Hope this helps!
Dr David Ng C H