What Is Pigmentation?
Pigmentation also known as hyperpigmentation, is a common skin condition where some areas or the patches of skin turn darker in color. It is usually a harmless condition that is caused when there is too much of the pigment- melanin on the surface of the skin. Another form of pigmentation, also known as hypopigmentation is a condition where the patches of skin become lighter or whiter in the color as compared to the normal surrounding skin.
What Are The Causes Of Pigmentation?
Pigmentation could be caused due to the genetics, stress, sun exposure, fluctuating hormones occurred due to pregnancy or by birth control pills, insulin resistance, menopause, overly aggressive skin care treatment or damage to the skin due to injury or even due to frequent use of hair dyes and many more reasons.
According to majority of dermatologists, pigmentation is most often an embarrassing condition. Most of the people accept brown patches of pigmentation as a part of growing older as well as the youngsters on the contrary are being affected in a negative way when they suffer from imperfect skin. The pigmentation occurs more in women as compared to men as overexposure to the sun rays greatly affects the skin of women till a greater extent as compared to men. Also people residing in tropical climatic regions having harsh sun exposure on the daily basis would have more melanin on their skin.
Different Types of Pigmentation:
Hyperpigmentation may be caused either due to increased melanin deposition into the dermis or epidermis layer of the skin. Different types of pigmentation are-
Melasma is the uneven production of pigmentation on the face that usually represents as black or dark brown skin patches. One of the primary causes of Melasma is sun exposure as well as other additional factors that may include certain health issues or the medications, use of oral contraceptives as well as hormonal imbalances that are caused by pregnancy and menopause.
Freckles are the most visible on people who have a much fairer complexion. Having the freckles is genetic but the sun damage could result into excessive as well as uneven freckles.
- Peri-orbital melanosis:
The peri-orbital melanosis, also known as dark circles are caused due to stress or even eyestrain. This is a hereditary imbalance of pigmentation which can affect future generations too.
Photo-melanosis is an increased pigmentation due to high sun exposure that is exposed on the skin. The area mainly includes- face, neck, arms as well as back. The pigmentation may appear as patchy or the diffused melanin on the skin. It is a condition that is more commonly encountered by the fair skinned people due to the excessive sun exposure.
Preventive Measures for Pigmentation:
One the best ways to avoid pigmentation is to apply a sunscreen having a minimum SPF of 30+. This sunscreen would greatly help in blocking both the UVA as well as UVB lights from penetrating inside the layer of skin. This sunscreen needs to be applied almost every three to four hours if one is going outdoors. Oral use of antioxidants could also help in reducing the pigmentation. Also, if creams do not work, the chemical peels, fractional lasers are other treatment options for which one can opt. these procedures usually require multiple sessions at the intervals of maximum four weeks.