Hyperpigmentation is a common, usually harmless condition in which patches of skin become darker in colour than the surrounding skin. Darkening occurs when melanin, the brown pigment that produces skin colour, increases in the skin. Hyperpigmentation can affect people of any race. However ethnic groups with darker skin tones seem to be more prone. While increased pigmentation usually isn’t harmful, it can be a symptom of another medical condition – so if it appears suddenly or get progressively worse do speak to your doctor about it. Read on to learn more about causes of hyperpigmentation and how to treat it.
Inceased pigmentation can
- occur in small patches
- cover large areas
- affect the entire body
Types of hyperpigmentation:
Age Spots or Sunspots
Also called liver spots or solar lentigines or sunspots. They are related to excess sun exposure over time. Generally, they appear as spots on areas exposed to the sun, like the hands and face. They are the most common form of hyperpigmentation.
Melasma & Chloasma
Melasma or chloasma spots are similar in appearance to age spots but cover larger areas. Here the darkening of skin is most often as a result of hormonal changes. Melasma is believed to be caused by hormonal changes and may develop during pregnancy. Areas of hyperpigmentation can appear on any area of the body, but they appear most commonly on the stomach and face. Pregnancy, for example, can trigger overproduction of melanin that causes the “mask of pregnancy” on the face and darkened skin on the abdomen and other areas. Women who take birth control pills may also develop hyperpigmentation because their bodies undergo similar kind of hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy.
Changes in skin color can result from outside. For example, inflammatory skin conditions such as acne, eczema or psoriasis may leave dark spots after the condition clears. Other causes of dark spots are injuries to the skin, including some surgeries.
Freckles are small brown spots that can appear anywhere on the body, but are most common on the face and arms. They are an inherited characteristic. Freckles, age spots, and other darkened skin patches can become darker or more pronounced when skin is exposed to the sun. This happens because melanin absorbs the energy of the sun’s harmful ultraviolet rays in order to protect he skin from overexposure.
Other causes of hyperpigmentation
Darkened areas on the skin are the main symptoms of hyperpigmentation. Patches can vary in size and develop anywhere on the body.
The biggest risk factors for general hyperpigmentation are sun exposure and inflammation, as both situations can increase melanin production. The greater your exposure to the sun, the greater your risk of increased skin pigmentation.
Depending on the type of disorder, other risk factors for hyperpigmented patches may include:
- oral contraceptive use or pregnancy, as seen with melasma
- darker skin type, which is more prone to pigmentation changes
- drugs that increase your sensitivity to the sunlight
- trauma to the skin, such as a wound or superficial burns
How is it treated?
Rasayana Rejuvenating Serum contains Rosehip Seed Oil & Daucus Carota. These ingredients are high in betacarotenes or natural vitamin A and Vitamin C. Both these vitamins are key to reducing pigmentation.
Dermal Renewal Facial is an intensive yet gentle skin resurfacing treatment using fruit extracts and enzymes. The Dermal Renewal facial is designed to renew skin cells to reveal healthier, younger-looking skin. This treatment is a safe alternative to chemical peels and microdermabrasion. It resurfaces the skin without the damaging after-effects. It is perfect for reducing acne scarring, hyperpigmentation and fine lines plus wrinkles. Clients love this treatment for its amazing results. Its a natural alternative to a chemical peel.
How to prevent hyperpigmentation?
It’s not always possible to prevent hyperpigmentation. However, you can protect yourself by:
- using sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. Look for:
- a good natural physical block sunscreen
- SPF 30
- broad spectrum coverage
Use sunscreen daily. Reapply it every 2 hours if you’re out in the sun — more frequently if you’re sweating or swimming.
- wear hats or clothing that block sunlight
- avoiding the sun during the time of the day when it’s strongest, which is typically 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Speak to your medical professional about medications that cause hyperpigmentation.