Have you experienced skin discoloration? Are certain areas of your skin darker than others? Well, then you are suffering from hyperpigmentation.
What Is Hyperpigmentation?
Patches of skin that are darker than the surrounding area of skin are termed as ‘hyperpigmentation’ by healthcare professionals. It occurs as a result of the overproduction of melanin; a pigment that gives the skin its color. Those with darker skin tones have higher melanin production than those with lighter skin shades.
Melanin makes certain areas or patches of the skin darker than others. Age spots, sun spots and melasma are types of hyperpigmentation. These usually occur as a result of the skin’s exposure to the sun and typically affect exposed areas like arms, legs and your face.
Another type of hyperpigmentation includes post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation that occurs as a result of an injury or skin inflammation such as cuts, burns or acne. Different types of hyperpigmentation require a different range of treatments and products, including creams and cosmetic procedures.
Causes of Hyperpigmentation
Many factors can cause hyperpigmentation. Here are some of the most common causes of hyperpigmentation:
One of the leading causes of hyperpigmentation and other skin concerns is sun exposure. Being exposed to the sun’s harmful UV rays not only causes an array of other problems but also increases the production of melanin in your body, causing hyperpigmentation.
Skin inflammation typically caused by acne, eczema or an injury causes certain areas of the skin to darken. People with darker skin tones have a higher chance of developing post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
Hormonal changes have a significant influence on your skin. Changes in your hormones, especially during pregnancy, can result in dark skin patches also known as hyperpigmentation. Melasma can be super-sensitive to heat and light, making it one of the most difficult kinds of hyperpigmentation to treat.
Medical Conditions and Drug Use
There are certain medical conditions, such as the Addison’s disease and hemochromatosis, which can lead to hyperpigmentation. Moreover, certain medications such as antidepressants or anti-malarial drugs also cause hyperpigmentation, forming grey patches on your skin.
How to Prevent Hyperpigmentation
Preventing hyperpigmentation is not always under your control and mostly depends on the type of hyperpigmentation you have. However, you can take certain steps to protect yourself mainly from the sun or age spots.
It’s never too late to protect your skin and prevent hyperpigmentation. If you experience other symptoms in addition to dark skin patches, you might want to consult a doctor or dermatologist!