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- Melanin and Its Impact on Skin Color
- Hyperpigmentation and Hyperpigmentation
- Treatments of Pigmentation
Pigmentation is the abnormal coloring of the skin. It has many types and a lot of people around the world face this problem. The first step in treating pigmentation is getting to know its root cause. Once you understand this, you can take the right measures for its treatment.
It is important to note the areas with pigmentation are generally not painful or itchy. Pigmentation usually impacts a person’s appearance alone. If you face uneasiness or pain in areas with pigmentation, the cause of pain is likely to be different. In this blog, you will learn about different types of pigmentation, its causes, and its treatments.
Melanin and Its Impact on Skin Color
Melanin is a natural pigment in skin responsible for a person’s skin color. This chemical is created by specialized cells in skin melanocytes which are located at the outermost layer of skin. Naturally, people with darker skin tones have more melanin and people with light skin tone have less melanin.
Hyperpigmentation and Hyperpigmentation
Different factors can impact the production of melanin causing hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation. A person facing hyperpigmentation gets dark-colored spots on their skin. And in hypopigmentation, a person has light spots on their skin.
Types of Hyperpigmentation
The following are some common types of hyperpigmentation:
Freckles on the face and other sun-exposed areas of skin are a common problem among people with fair skin. These are small light brown or tan-colored spots that appear because of excessive melanin production. Although freckles appear due to sun exposure, they are not considered sun damage. Applying sunscreen lotion can save you from more spots appearing on your skin.
Melasma is another type of hyperpigmentation which is more common among women. This condition is often associated with hormonal change especially during pregnancy. The use of different drugs including birth control pills can impact hormones and in turn trigger Melasma.
3. Age Spots (Liver Spots)
Age Spots typically appear on the sun-exposed skin of older individuals, above the age of 50. These spots can be brown, gray, or black and they appear when too much melanin is produced in skin. It is more common among old people but may also happen to younger individuals.
4. Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation
Often the sites of acne, burns, surgeries and even inflammation leave behind discoloration. Inflammation on skin increases the production of melanin in such cases. The resulting excess of melanin results in hyperpigmentation.
Types of Hypopigmentation
Hypopigmentation is usually genetic. However, infections and skin problems like eczema can also cause lightened skin. The following are some common types of hypopigmentation:
Albinism is caused by genetic mutation. People with albinism have little to no color on their skin, white hair, and blue eyes. They are born with this condition.
Vitiligo is an autoimmune disease and can be hereditary. Lack of melanin leaves patches or spots of light skin. Unlike hyperpigmentation, discolored spots can appear anywhere on the skin, exposed to sun or not.
Treatments of Pigmentation
There are different treatments that can temporarily or in some cases permanently treat pigmentation. If you are looking for a long-lasting solution, you should learn about pigmentation removal Singapore price and procedures. Below are some common pigmentation treatments:
1. Topical Treatments
This type of treatment includes the application of over the counter or prescribed topical medications. Ingredients like retinoids, kojic acid, and vitamin C are known to lighten the pigmentation. There are also steroid medications like hydrocortisone that lower the production of melanin in the skin. However, long-term use of various topicals may cause other problems.
2. Home Remedies
Some home remedies are also found to be effective against pigmentation. Aloe vera gel, green tea, and licorice extracts may help lighten pigmentation. Multiple studies have proven their effectiveness.
3. Chemical Peels
This treatment involves applying chemicals on skin which exfoliate and peel off uncovering less pigmented skin from underneath. It is important to note that these chemicals, especially stronger ones, may cause irritation, itching, and allergies in some cases.
4. Laser Therapy
Laser therapy involves the use of lasers on the spots of hyperpigmentation. In this process, the laser heats and breaks the pigment without damaging the tissue. The pigments fade and a finer complexion of skin appears after treatment. Generally, it is safe, but in some people the site of laser application may develop hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation afterwards.
Anyone with pigmentation should consult a doctor and have their skin examined. Following your doctor’s advice may be the best course of action. A doctor can diagnose your problem, understand your skin type, and then suggest the best way to treat your pigmentation.