What is Hyperpigmentation and How is it Treated?
Hyperpigmentation describes darkened areas on your skin. Women and men can experience it, and people of all skin tones are affected. Once you have darkened areas, sun exposure can make them more noticeable.
The skin contains cells referred to as melanocytes and these produce pigment. When they start to produce too much, hyperpigmentation occurs. This results in patches or spots on your skin’s surface that are varying shades of gray or brown. Any area of the skin can be affected.
Several factors are believed to contribute to this problem. These include:
- Trauma to the skin
- Contact with certain plants or cosmetics
- Certain medications
Do’s and Don’ts with Hyperpigmentation
There are certain lifestyle factors that may worsen or improve this condition. Avoiding what can make it worse and implementing improvement methods can be beneficial.
- Significantly reduce your sun exposure
- Wear sunscreen daily, reapply as the directions state and ensure it is SPF 45 or higher
- Cover your skin when you are outside with sunglasses, hats and sun-protective clothing
- Never scrub at hyperpigmented areas as this can worsen them and possibly damage your skin
- Avoid abrasive scrubs or lemon juice (and similar home remedies) because these can make the condition worse
Crafting a good skincare regimen is a great place to start. A quality sunscreen, skin brightener and moisturizer should be used. There are multiple skin brightener options you might explore, including vitamin C, tretinoin, hydroquinone, azelaic acid and kojic acid. When you are creating a skincare regimen, consider your skin type and any other skin issues along with your hyperpigmentation. It is important to not sacrifice one issue for the sake of the darkened areas.
If a solid skincare regimen is not producing results, there are a few additional treatment options you can explore, including microdermabrasion, superficial chemical peels and lasers or intense pulsed light.
Microdermabrasion removes the top layer of skin. This is done via the use of a special machine that has a diamond or rough particle tip. Following a treatment, your skin texture becomes smoother. Depending on the level of hyperpigmentation you are experiencing, you may need two or more sessions of this non-invasive procedure.
Chemical peels exfoliate the skin so that a superficial layer peels off. This is done via the use of a chemical solution, which is a mild acid, such as alpha-hydroxy acid. This is a simple procedure that leaves your skin smoother and rejuvenated.
Light or laser therapy uses devices emitting intense pulsed light or a laser. The purpose is to target damaged skin to promote regeneration. It reduces inflammation, improves circulation and helps to stimulate collagen production. This results in skin that is smoother and more even. You may notice a difference after one treatment, but in some cases, more than one treatment is necessary.
With this information, you can see that hyperpigmentation is common and can happen to anyone. There are treatments that may help you to achieve a more even skin tone. Contact All About Me Medial Day Spa to schedule your consultation today!