Freckles are a group of circular brown, flat spots that usually darken due to sun exposure. Freckles usually appear on the face (commonly around the nose and cheeks), and are also known as ‘ephelis.’ These spots are presented in groups and are multiple in number. Freckles commonly develop on sun-exposed skin after continuous or repeated exposure to the sun. Homeopathic medicines for freckles work by slowly lightening the melanin deposits and also help minimize the chances of their recurrence.
All type of skin tones may develop freckles but it is most common in people with fair complexion. The freckles usually appear uniformly but the appearance of it may differ in different people. Freckles may be yellow, reddish, tan, light brown or black. Freckles appear slightly darker than the surrounding skin and are most commonly found in children before puberty.
Homeopathic Medicines for Freckles
Homeopathy offers the safest and most effective treatment for freckles. As these medicines are made of natural substances it makes them safe for treating the freckles. Natural medicines treat freckles in a gentle, yet long-lasting manner. Unlike conventional treatment, homeopathic remedies do not use any harsh cosmetic procedures to lighten freckles. Further, these medicines used for treating the freckles not only work by lightening the melanin deposits but also helps in minimizing the chances of their recurrence without any side effects. Lycopodium, Pulsatilla, Thuja, Sepia, Natrum Carb, Phosphorus, Nitricum Acidum, and Sulphur are the top remedies.
1. Lycopodium – For Liver Spots
Lycopodium (commonly known as club moss) is a herb that grows or is a native of northern Europe, North America, and Great Britain. This plant belongs to the Lycopodiaceae family and has a slender stem that trails along the ground and vertical branches.
Lycopodium is a medicine usually used to treat Liver spots or lentigines that are worse on the face and nose.
2. Pulsatilla – For Freckles in Young Women
Pulsatilla is a medicine prepared from a Wind Flower plant. This perennial plant belongs to the Ranunculaceae family and is native to eastern and central Europe, Norway and Denmark.
Pulsatilla is successfully used to treat freckles in young females with a red, hot, flushed face.
3. Thuja – For Light Brown Freckles
Thuja is obtained from twigs of young thuja tree also known as Arbor Vitae. This plant belongs to Cupressaceae family and is native of North America and Eastern Canada. This remedy is used to treat brown spots, freckles, and blotches successfully.
Thuja is best suited when skin is pale, dry with dark circles under the eyes.
4. Sepia – For brown colored Freckles
Sepia is used to treat discoloration on the nose and cheeks in young women. A yellowish-brown saddle across the nose and wrinkled skin with spots and yellow blotches are indicative of this medicine.
5. Natrum Carbonicum – For Freckles with Yellow Spots
Natrum Carbonicum commonly known as carbonate of soda belongs to mineral kingdom and is used to treat freckles on a pale face with blue rings around the eyes. It is best suited when skin is dry, rough, chapped with yellow spots and pimples.
6. Phosphorous – For Freckles which Gets Worse in Summer
Phosphorus is sourced from the essential mineral phosphorus. It is used to treat freckles with red spots which get worse in summers or on 7. constant sun exposure.
7. Nitricum Acidum – For Dark Freckles
This remedy is prepared by blending sodium nitrate and sulphuric acid. Nitric acid is most indicated in dark-colored freckles
which is mostly accompanied by pimples covering the face.
8. Sulphur – For Freckles with Dry Skin
Sourced from mineral kingdom Sulphur is prepared from sulphur sublimatum. This remedy is used to treat spotted freckles with pale, dry skin. It is best indicated when skin is unhealthy-looking with the presence of acne, old-looking face and circumscribed red cheeks.
In the conventional system of medicine, freckles are treated with the help of topical creams and different skin procedures. The most commonly used topical creams for treating freckles in the conventional system of medicine are fluocinolone, Hydroquinone, retinoids, and tretinoin. These topical creams often result in severe skin irritation, blistering, scaling and crusting of the skin. It may also cause irritation of eyes, nose, and mouth in some cases. Conventional treatment also often uses different skin procedure like cryosurgery, laser treatment, photo facials and chemical peels for the treatment of freckles. Common side effects of these skin procedure involve redness of the skin, swelling of the treated area. In some cases, these procedures may also result in burning scarring and change in pigmentation of the skin. Homeopathy works by lightening the melanin deposits and also helps minimize the chances of their recurrence without any side effects.
Causes of Freckles
Freckles are created as a result of an accumulation of the skin pigment (melanin) at one place and are often caused due to sun exposure. Genetics and a fair skin tone are other factors that may trigger the production of freckles.
Usually, on the exposure to UV radiation, the melanocytes get activated leading to the overproduction of melanin granules known as melanosomes. These melanosomes are responsible for the change in the color of the outer skin cell. Increased concentration of melanin may also cause freckles to mount up and cover the entire area of skin.
Genetics is the other common factors that may trigger the production of freckles. Presence of freckles is often associated with alleles of MC 1R gene.
Freckles almost never develop on covered skin. The most common site for freckles to occur is on face commonly around the nose and cheeks, arms, neck, upper back and shoulders. Freckles are distinctly more common in people with red hair and a fair complexion.
Fair Skin and Freckles
Fair-skinned people are most vulnerable to freckles and sun-related skin damage.
In fair-skinned people, the amount of melanin present is low, making more susceptible to freckles and sun damage to skin whereas in dark skin people the quantity of melanin is more which is helpful in blocking the UV rays and preventing the damage to skin by harmful sun rays.
Age above 50 or older makes people more prone to freckles and age spots.
At the age 50 or above people become more prone to develop freckles and age spots. As we grow older our skin starts to get thin and losing its elasticity; also the blood vessels which carry blood and the healing nutrients to skin surface become weak and frail. Hence the older we get we become more vulnerable to develop freckles and age spots.
People exposed to UV Rays in a high degree tend to be at a higher risk to develop freckles.
On exposure to UV radiation, the melanocytes get activated, leading to the overproduction of melanin granules which are responsible for the change in the color of outer skin cell and freckles. Therefore people like sports persons, swimmers, hikers, and field workers who are more exposed to UV rays become more prone to develop freckles.
Some of the ingredients in commonly used medication can boost skin sensitivity to the sun.
Common allergy medication, pain relievers, topical ointments for acne and some anti-aging creams containing alpha hydroxyl acids boosts the skin sensitivity to sun thus making it more prone to freckles and sun damage.
Compromised or weak immune system refrains the skin cells to resist or repair the skin damage.
If your immune system has been weakened or compromised due to some past infection or chronic diseases it refrains the skin cells in repairing the skin damage caused due to daily sun exposure thus making it more predisposed to freckles, sun spots, and fine lines.
Types of Freckles
Freckles can be classified into ephelides and lentigines.
The word ephelides is derived from the Greek word ‘ephelis’ and is a medical term for freckle. Ephelides denotes 1 mm-2 mm flat spots that are usually light brown tanned and slightly reddish in color which appears during sunny months. They are typically found in people with light complexion being more common in red hair and people with green eyes. In some families, ephelides are found to e a genetic or a hereditary trait.
The term lentigines is originated from the Latin word ‘Lentil’ and are used as a medical term for large pigmented spots which are commonly known as liver spots. Lentigines are usually present at the site of sunburn and sun damage. These pigmented spots are darker than ephelides and do not fade away easily. Lentigines are also termed as Lentigo simplex or solar lentigo.
Natural Management of Freckles
Freckles can be naturally treated by adding vitamin C, E, and antioxidants to our diet which enhance the skin repair and also prevent the occurrences of the freckles and age spots.
Regular exfoliation of the skin also helps in fading the freckles as it stimulates the new skin cell growth and also helps in getting rid of darker, damaged skin.
Moisturizing the skin regularly keeps the skin well hydrated, healthier and makes it more firm to withstand the sun damage.
Consumption of green tea helps in rejuvenating damaged skin cells and also assist in hydration of skin thus preventing freckles and age spots.
Freckles can also be prevented by the use of sunscreens, wide-brimmed hats, seeking shade, staying indoors and avoiding the peak sun hours from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.