Hyperpigmentation can ruin a beautiful and glowing face, especially forehead hyperpigmentation. This condition occurs when a specific skin area looks darker than the surrounding area due to excess melanin production. It usually happens during pregnancy, aging skin, and some injuries. Luckily, there are medical and non-medical solutions available for this condition. Non-medical solutions or home remedies can work to a limit. Medical treatments like chemical peels can provide faster, more visible, and long-lasting results.
Dr. Priyanka Reddy, a Pigmentation Treatment Specialist in Bangalore, explains that hyperpigmentation can occur on the cheeks, upper lips, and forehead. There are several treatments available for different pigmentation conditions.
Different Types of Pigmentation Disorders
Pigmentation disorders can cause lightning and darkening of the skin. Further, other factors leading to skin color change may include trauma and other bodily changes. There are two types of skin pigmentation discolorations, which include hypopigmentation and hyperpigmentation.
Hypopigmentation is a condition where a specific area of the skin becomes lighter than the surrounding skin. This can happen when the body cannot produce enough melanin and develops spots throughout the body. There are several factors causing hypopigmentation, such as:
Inflammatory skin conditions such as Psoriasis or eczema.
Infection, burns, or any chemical exposure.
A rare genetic disorder called Albinism, where melanin-producing enzymes are missing.
Hyperpigmentation is a skin condition where the body produces melanin in excess and causes some patches or spots to appear darker than the rest of the body. Hyperpigmentation impacts people with different skin types. Burns and cuts are some of the most common reasons for this condition. Although excess pigmentation may be medically harmless, sometimes it can indicate an underlying condition.
All in all, hyperpigmentation is usually harmless, but people may want to eliminate it for aesthetic reasons. Causes of hyperpigmentation may include, but are not limited to:
Drugs like birth control pills and antibiotics
Other factors of Pigmentation
There is no certain reason for pigmentation. However, sun damage is still considered the most prominent one. Furthermore, some of the most common reasons for pigmentation may include, but are not limited to:
Sunburn - To protect itself from sun damage, the skin produces more melanin and causes hyperpigmentation.
Fungal infection - Fungal infections such as Tinea Versicolor is a common fungal infection that disturbs normal skin pigmentation causing small and discolored patches.
Auto-Imune Disorders: Vitiligo is one of the most common autoimmune disorders causing skin patches to lose Pigmentation.
Hormonal Changes and Imbalance: A steep rise in estrogen levels stimulates melanin production.
Pregnancy: The physiology of hyperpigmentation appears to be linked to increased estrogen production and may have elevated levels of progesterone or a melanocyte-stimulating hormone.
Common Types of Hyperpigmentation
Melasma: It's also termed "chloasma," or the "mask of pregnancy," when it appears in pregnant women. The illness affects women and men both, but the condition impacts women more. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, 90% of melasma patients are female. There are three types of melasma:
Sun Spots: In this pigmentation, dark patches appear on the face, shoulders, arms, upper back, and chest. Also known as solar lentigines, they mainly occur in body regions constantly exposed to sunlight.
Ephelides and Freckles: Freckles are not dangerous and usually disappear throughout the winter. They can be cured with a laser, but freckles may reappear if sun protection is not applied regularly.
Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation: This occurs as a result of wounds or skin damage. Although anybody can develop post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, it is more prevalent in people with darker skin tones. Acne patients are more likely to exhibit this type of pigmentation. Therapy for post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is a time-consuming process that may take 6 to 12 months to notice results.
How are Pigmentation Disorders Diagnosed?
The doctor may run some tests and consider the patient's medical history to find out the exact condition. Some of the tests include:
Visual Examination: The doctor may examine the symptoms with the naked eye.
Wood's Lamp: A Wood's lamp releases UV light and helps to determine whether someone has a fungal or bacterial infection on their skin or scalp. The region where the Wood's light is illuminating will glow if there is an infection.
Skin Biopsy: Dermatologists do skin biopsies on a routine basis: To diagnose a skin lesion or mole, a sample of skin is removed. A tiny dose of anesthetic numbs the skin, making the operation nearly painless. A biopsy usually feels like a tiny pinch once the anesthesia is delivered.
Best Treatments for Pigmentation
It is recommended to see a Skin Specialist in Bangalore before getting any treatment, as the doctor will thoroughly examine the patient's medical history to find the best possible treatment. Some of the most popular pigmentation treatments include:
In this procedure, the topmost layer of skin is removed, and the underlying skin cells are coaxed to grow, resulting in smoother, brighter, and healthier skin. The more skin that is removed, the more stunning the effects. Depending on the required amount, different chemicals are used. Alpha hydroxy acids include glycolic, lactic, and fruit acids, to name a few. The doctor recommends avoiding direct sunlight for the time period specified.
With no downtime, this is the most preferred pigmentation treatment option currently. It has no effect on the top layer of the skin and instead targets the deep skin layer to break down the melanin pigment. The heat produced by the laser beams also encourages the production of new collagen. Hence, this therapy can lead to complete skin regeneration in addition to reducing dark spots. Contrary to popular belief, this technique is virtually painless and does not induce skin thinning. The benefits are evident in a few days and will continue to improve over the next few weeks. Further sessions may be necessary to get the desired and long-term outcomes
Intense Pulsed Light
This non-ablative laser therapy, also known as a "photo facial," stimulates collagen growth in the inner skin layer (dermis). Besides resolving pigmentation issues, photo facials are also indicated for treating spider veins. It works well for freckles and post-inflammatory pigmentation. Each session may last around 20-30 minutes.
These topical treatments include ingredients to reduce melanin levels, therefore, leading to reduced pigmentation. These should be used twice a day. If the doctor recommends these topical creams after analyzing the patient's skin, they are highly effective on most skin types and are best used for melasma or aging spots. Remember that only some products that claim to provide results are beneficial and may have adverse effects. Before using such skin-lightening products, one should visit a doctor.
Skin pigmentation has multiple causes, but sun damage is one of the most prominent. Thankfully, there are effective treatments available for it. But it is essential to find the best pigmentation treatment specialist in Bangalore, such as Dr. Priyanka Reddy, who provides the best skin treatments with her expertise and latest tools. One can visit her at the DNA skin clinic in Bangalore.