Hyperpigmentation is a common skin condition. These are dark patches caused by various factors such as acne scars, sun damage, hormonal imbalances and many more. It is a skin condition that can affect people of all ages, gender, and skin colour.
The melanin pigment in our skin is responsible for giving it tone and protection against UV rays. Sometimes, the concentration in which the pigment is present can increase abnormally or unevenly. This can even cause hyperpigmentation of the skin.
Hyperpigmentation can make parts of the skin look darker, blotchy and uneven in tone and texture.
There is no quick fix to this problem, and it is tedious to cover up with make-up. Timely in-clinic treatments or use of customised skincare routine can help to even out skin tone which in turn makes the skin look healthier and younger. Here are some general causes of hyperpigmentation.
Causes of Hyperpigmentation
- Excessive exposure to the sun.
- Inflammation in the skin.
- Skin Trauma.
- Hormonal Changes
- Solar lentigines.
- Age spots.
- Usage of certain drugs.
Common Types of Hyperpigmentation: Their Symptoms
The most effective way of treating hyperpigmentation is to understand the underlying cause. Here is an overview of the commonly found types.
Solar lentigines: This is a type of hyperpigmentation caused due to direct exposure to the sun. As the skin comes in contact with the UVA and UVB rays of the sun, the defence mechanism triggers and stimulates the melanocytes in the skin. This tends to produce excessive melanin causing uneven patches on the skin.
Melasma: Is another type of hyperpigmentation mainly occurring to pregnant women due to hormonal imbalances.
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH): This occurs mainly due to skin injury or trauma such as acne, dermatitis, skin rashes, insect bites to name a few.
Age spots/ liver spots: They are mainly caused as a result of photoaging and damages caused by the sun which in turn accelerates skin ageing.
It is highly recommended to visit a dermatologist if an existing mole changes in the colour, shape, size, or texture. This may indicate an early sign of skin cancer.