Hyperpigmentation also known as dark spots and we will know everything about it step by step here. When we expose our skin to ultra violet rays from sun or a tanning bed the body itself protect by producing pigment called melanin.
But when you overexpose to sun rays creates over pigmentation causing to grow dark spots. It is also noted that hormonal imbalance may lead to hyper pigmentation to the pregnant women. Sometimes antibiotics make your skin photo sensitive which is prone to dark spots.
It is always better to prevent growth of pigmentation or sun damage by antioxidant, sun block, and skin stimulation. Again pregnant woman with Melasma find their skin returns to normal position after the pregnancy is over.
Type of Hyper Pigmentation:
There are 4 types hyper pigmentation and we discuss how these can be treated.
Melasma: The Melasma color is light to medium brown and it generally appears on the cheeks, side of face, upper portion of nose, above the lip and forehead. The type of patches have inconsistent in shape and size.
The growth Melasma is caused by hormone increase, pregnancy and sun exposure. This type of hyper pigmentation can be well treated with hydroquinone and Retin-A plus vitamin C or cosmelan.
- Sun spot ( liver spots ): The sun spot color is light to dark brown and appears on the face, hands and chest. This type of hyper pigmentation looks like small, flat and dark spots. This is completely caused by sun rays and can be well treated with Retinol plus IPL.
- Post inflammatory hyper pigmentation (PIH): The color of this hyperpigmentationmay be pink, brown or red. This type of pigmentation may appear anywhere on the face and looks like flat spots. It is caused by inflammatory acne and can be well treated with light salicylic acid chemical peels, red light or blue light.
- Freckles: Freckles look light to dark brown, black, or red. It may appear on the face, arms or chest. This type of Freckles looks like concentrated spots. This is mainly caused by sun rays. This can be well treated with Fraxel.
Now that we know that pigmentation is coloring of skin and hyperpigmentation is excessive coloring of skin. It may occur in small patches covering large area or even entire body.
What is the Reason Behind Hyperpigmentation?
Since hyper pigmentation is coloring of skin which appears on skin when the melanin is overproduced in certain area. It looks like flat, darkened patches of skin light brown to black in color and can be of different shape and sizes. There are many types of hyper pigmentation but the most common are Melasa and Post inflammatory hyper pigmentation.
Melasma: The melasma is often called as mask of pregnancy as it affects almost 90% of pregnant women. It occurs as a result of hormonal imbalance such as pregnancy, birth control peel. It is found in irregular shape on face, cheek and arms which can be large.
Post imflammatory hyperpigmentation: It occurs when there is skin injury and trauma leaves discolored area behind. This is commonly found the people who are suffering from acne. This type of pigmentation arises from cosmetic procedures such as dermabrasion, laser treatment, and chemical peels. There are also other cuses that the patches of skin can be more dark such as scarring and birthmarks.
Pigment spots: Pigment spot also called as age spots are cause by excessive sun exposure. That is the reason that these appear sun exposed area like face, cheek, arms and hands. They look like darken patches of skin and in small size.
What makes Hyperpigmentation as dark spot?
The main cause of hyper pigmentation is overproduction of melanin. Melanin is a group of pigments that is produced from oxidation of amino acids. The pigment that gives our skin color in patches of skin. The over production of this melanin is not only due to sun exposure but also due to age, genetic factor, hormonal imbalance, skin injuries and inflammation.
Sun exposure: This is the most effective cause of hyper pigmentation as because sun light triggers very quickly production of melanin. This melanin protects from harmful utra violet rays of sun but excessive exposure is very much harmful which leads to hyper pigmentation. Once dark spots grow sun exposure will exacerbate these as freckles.
You can limit your sun exposure time along with protective clothing and sun screen of broad spectrum in order to get rid of hyper pigmentation. The dark spot already grown will not worsen if these protection and limitation are maintained.
Hormonal influence: this influence is the main cause of a particular type of hyper pigmentation which is called as Melasma or Chloasma. It is mostly found among women and it is primarily due to female hormone.
The pregnant women are prone to Malasma and as such it called as musk of pregnanacy.It is also predominant among the black skin individuals.Hyperpigmentation is also prone to some diseases like gastrointestinal, autoimmune diseases. The metabolic disorder and vitamin shortage are also the causes of hyper pigmentation.
What best treatment for hyper pigmentation?
Chemical peels: It is nothing but an acid solution that can be applied to the face, hands and feet in order to remove surface skin layer. This chemical causes the skin to blister and peel off revealing new skin. The other treatment of laser therapy has got the same effect which is more precise.
Since the dermatologist can show more control over this treatment and they apply zapping with a high energy light. So the result is that the mild treatment is applied on the skin surface layer and intense treatment applied on deep skin layer.
This dermatologist treatment is very effective in case of hyper pigmentation but these are very expensive and relatively invasive. The dermatologist in this way can easily irritate, inflame or can even burn the skin to get maximum result and these are applied with black skin people post inflammatory hyper pigmentation.
Some other option: In recent years some other skin care products (Like – hyper pigmentation cream, vitamin C serum etc.) have come to market to reduce hyper pigmentation substantially. Hydroquinone is the most powerful ingredient to reduce this hyper pigmentation.
But the solution should be less concentration of only 2%. Arbutin is the natural source of hydroquinone and is a strong ingredient normally used to whiten the skin. Retinoid acid is very much effective in hyper pigmentation treatment. Azelaic acid also indirect effect in the production melanin.