Have you ever wondered what those dark spots on your skin are or how they appeared in the first place? Hyperpigmentation is the darkening of skin from the increased presence of melanin. Melanin is what gives our skin color, but some things cause its production to go into overdrive, resulting in dark spots on our skin.
The following four factors can contribute to or even directly cause hyperpigmentation. Chances are you deal with one or more of them:
1. Excess sun exposure – Melanin production is your body’s response to sun exposure, which is why you get a tan from excess time in the sun. Overexposure can lead to hyperpigmentation, manifesting as freckles, age spots or melasma.
You don’t need to swear off the sun, but you can prevent over-exposure by limiting your time spent in direct sunlight, or wearing protective clothing and a full-spectrum sunscreen.
2. Hormonal shifts – The Beverly Hills Dermatology Clinic cites that, “the second most frequent cause of hyperpigmentation is hormone changes. This may be a result of birth control pills, pregnancy or the various stages of menopause. Hormone shifts trigger the melanin cells to go into over-drive.”
If you’re experiencing hyperpigmentation while on the pill, pregnant or menopausal, there may be treatments available from your doctor.
3. Certain medications. There are several medications that cause hyperpigmentation in some patients. Among them are select anti-inflammatory drugs, and some drugs used to treat psychosis, cancer and epilepsy. If you experience hyperpigmentation after beginning a new medication, your doctor may be able to prescribe alternatives.
4. Any and all traumas to the skin. You may have heard the term post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation. It’s the darkened skin that remains after a cut, burn, chemical exposure, acne, eczema or psoriasis has healed. It can be professionally treated with various procedures, and its only prevention is to acquire as few wounds as possible—but life is life.
If you’re treating hyperpigmented skin back to health, or you have any other dermal imperfections you’re trying to fade, use a soothing cream like SkinAgain’s Youth to aid in the process. Interested in our latest posts on all things skin health and beauty? “Like” us on Facebook and get in on the action!
~Your SkinAgain Family