Skin Hyperpigmentation; Symptoms, Causes and Treatments

Uneven skin tone makes you feel insecure, doesn’t it? In the end, we have to diligently “patch” our skin with makeup such as foundation to make it look “flawless”. But it seems like it would be more effective if we could deal with skin problems instead of covering it, right? One of the common causes of uneven skin tone is hyperpigmentation. 

A common symptom is when some areas of your skin appear darker than their surroundings. The color can be black, brown, or gray. This discoloration can certainly be annoying and affect your self-confidence!

In order to prevent and treat this problem, we must first recognize the types of hyperpigmentation, causative factors and appropriate treatment. Let’s explore it together!

3 Types of Hyperpigmentation 

With various causative factors, hyperpigmentation has 3 types that are most commonly suffered by the general public, namely:

  • Melasma 

The causative factor is triggered by hormonal changes. This condition can occur in pregnant women and those who use hormonal contraceptives. It usually appears on the abdomen and face.

  • Sunspot/SunSpot 

This type is prone to appear due to excessive sun exposure. Those who are often outdoors, especially without the use of sunscreen, are very easily affected. Just as the name suggests, this discoloration is in the form of spots and is found in areas such as the face and hands. Who here rarely uses sunscreen?

  • Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation 

This type of hyperpigmentation usually occurs as a result of skin injury or inflammation. Serenitree Squad, have you ever experienced a burst pimple that left a mark? That’s one example. The healing process causes excessive melanin production, resulting in skin discoloration!

Now you know more about the various types in detail. Which of the three above have you experienced?

Factors Causing Hyperpigmentation

Here’s what we need to learn to prevent hyperpigmentation! Serenitree will summarize the most common causes:

  • Excess melanin production

Melanin is the pigment that gives our skin its color. If it is overproduced, there will be a darkening of the skin color. Why is it overproduced? It could be due to external and internal stimuli!

  • Effect of certain medications

What we consume can have an effect on the body, including the symptoms of hyperpigmentation itself. Antibiotics or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are an example! 

  • Pregnancy and hormonal changes

Pregnant women and mothers out there must have more or less experienced hyperpigmentation during pregnancy. This condition is triggered by hormonal fluctuations. No wonder, hormones can affect mood swings! 

  • Excessive sun exposure

UVA and UVB from sunlight can certainly be important for our bodies at certain hours. But it is not recommended for you to venture out in the sun without sunscreen! Without protection, there will be an excessive buildup of melanin in certain areas, such as the face, hands, or neck.

  • Effects of scars, acne, and skin inflammation 

Apart from acne, scars or inflammation can also develop. Other examples include scratches, burns, dermatitis or allergic reactions.

Not only that, guys, the factors that cause hyperpigmentation can also be genetic factors, vitamin deficiencies, thyroid disease and even the aging process! Therefore, it is important to check the condition of the skin so that we can prevent it.

Precautionary Measures

Once we’re sure of the cause, we can then progress towards the treatment! Just like the causative factors, there are many ways we can manage hyperpigmentation. Here are some tips from Serenitree:

  • Use of sunscreen

This is a must-have dictionary especially among skincare lovers! Otherwise, it’s not just about hyperpigmentation. You will potentially experience premature aging, sunburn and even skin cancer! How scary is that? Even though the use of sunscreen is very easy and there are many types that you can choose according to skin problems. 

Make sure the sunscreen you use provides physical protection with the main active ingredient in the form of zinc oxide, at least SPF 30-50 and can protect from UVA and UVB rays! It is also recommended to reapply after 2-3 hours for maximum protection.

  • Using additional protection

Is just using sunscreen enough? Of course not, especially with global warming. How hot is Indonesia, especially Jakarta, these days? 

Therefore, if you are exposed to the sun frequently, wear a hat, umbrella or sun-blocking clothing. It’s better to be safe than sorry!

  • Avoid intense sun exposure

Sunlight is good for your health because it can be a source of vitamin D. However, avoid sunbathing when the sun is shining most intensely from 10 am to 4 pm. The best is to sunbathe in the morning at 7-9!

  • Stay away from medications that cause hyperpigmentation

As we’ve discussed, there are drugs with hyperpigmentation side effects. This can be a sign for us to always be careful when taking medicines. Try to always consult before taking any medicine! 

How to Treat It?

Any skin problems should be consulted from the beginning to an expert or specialist, especially symptoms such as: Pain, itching or redness and heat on the skin.

Treatment of hyperpigmentation can be through medical procedures by a doctor or topical medications. If your problem can still be resolved with medication, your doctor will usually prescribe several remedies. For example: Whitening creams with active ingredients such as hydroquinone, kojic acid, or azelaic acid. Other topical medications can include retinoids (disguise dark patches on the skin).

However, for more severe conditions, treatment options such as chemical peels, laser therapy, and microdermabrasion are also available. These processes remove the hyperpigmented skin layer. 

So calm down! Even if you have already experienced this condition, there are still many ways to treat it. Don’t let hyperpigmentation ruin your confidence. Everyone is beautiful just the way they are. The key is to always be healthy and happy. Anyway, Serenitree will always be here to support whatever your skin needs!

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