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Let’s face it, it’s hard to be as careful as we should be in the sun. While sun exposure is just a fact of life for those of us who enjoy the outdoors, it is just as hard to avoid it in everyday life too. Even if you consciously avoid the sun, spending a couple of hours in the car every day can add up quickly to hundreds or even thousands of hours of UV exposure over a lifetime. And while most of us are pretty good (or should be) about putting sunscreen on our face every morning, we often forget about our neck and chest, which are often just as exposed as our face to the harmful effects of UV radiation.
Many men and women suffer from a condition called Poikiloderma, which happens when chronic exposure to the sun causes reddish-brown discoloration on the sides of the neck and the chest area. The skin texture in these areas also changes as well, giving it a “leathery” appearance.
A lot of people are really confused about what causes Poikiloderma. A clue that you have it is to take a look at your chest below the neckline of your shirt and the underside of your chin. Because of the sun protection the shirt provides and the shade cast on your neck from your chin in sunlight, the skin in these areas will look pristine compared to skin affected with Poikiloderma. While there may be other factors that cause it too, comparing sun-exposed and non-exposed skin points to chronic UV exposure as the main cause.
It can be a really tough problem to tackle. It is super important for you to continue to use your daily sunscreen, preferably one with an SPF of at least 30 that is broad-spectrum, meaning that it covers both UVA and UVB rays. Unfortunately, though, sunscreen won’t reverse the signs of sun damage once they’re there.
However, lasers can really help reverse both the redness and brownish discoloration of Poikiloderma. Celibre incorporates two lasers into our treatment regimen: the pulsed-dye laser and the q-switched laser.
Together, these two work synergistically to help erase unwanted discoloration on the neck and chest. The pulsed dye targets the redness, which is really increased vascularity or tiny blood vessels in the skin. The q-switched laser then goes after the brownish discoloration, which is caused by increased melanin or pigment in the skin. Each device has its own, unique target, but when you use them together in tandem, you can really improve the skin’s overall appearance.
We understand how frustrating this problem can be. While it’s not dangerous or harmful to your health, it can really impact your life. Having to wear shirts with certain necklines, or feeling embarrassed to wear jewelry that might draw attention to the area can limit your ability to express yourself the way you’d like. And it’s never fun if a friend or co-worker is constantly asking if you are upset since your skin stays that flushed color no matter how happy you are!
At Celibre, we understand Poikiloderma. There is help for it, and we are here to guide you through that process. If you’ve read this page, you’re well on your way to educating yourself, which is key in understanding if you’re ready for treatment. Give us a call today. We’d love to sit down and talk to you about how we can help you get your skin back to looking clear and get you feeling more confident. We offer absolutely free consultations at either of our Los Angeles offices. Please give us a call today!