Hyperpigmentation is entirely understood, but it remains a common skin condition that occurs through the ageing process and sun damage. It becomes prevalent in patches that are typically darker, though sometimes lighter, than your natural skin colour. It’s thought that hyperpigmentation occurs when the skin reacts quickly to an exterior trauma like injury or sun exposure. The skin produced excess melanin and skin cells to heal and protect the affected areas, though they’re not always the same colour as our skin tone.
The exact biological processes and internal mechanisms that cause the development aren’t one hundred percent known, but there are many ways hyperpigmentation can develop. Whether all at once or gradually over time, hyperpigmentation is unpredictable though thankfully treatable. Let’s take a look at the causes of hyperpigmentation and how the skin professionals at Omniya in Knightsbridge treat it.
The causes of hyperpigmentation
Sun damage and prolonged exposure isn’t kind to our skin, and this hostility doesn’t just begin and end with sun burn. It also encourages the onset of premature ageing, thinned skin, sun spots, and hyperpigmentation. When we expose our skin to the ultraviolet rays of the sun, it produces an inflammatory response. This response starts as early as the first exposure to sunlight, and prolonged exposure leads to drastically increased inflammation levels. We produce hormones to combat the inflammation, which encourage the excess production of melanin in the skin. Over the years, if you keep exposing your skin to the sun for long periods of time, the hormones that activate melanin production become permanently active and continue to darken the skin. This is why it’s important to wear sun protection; it will protect you from the short- and long-term effects of sun damage.
Skin trauma and damage, spanning from an injury to aggressive acne, leads to excess melanin production and contributes to hyperpigmentation. When you have any kind of skin trauma, we react to it with inflammation and the healing process in our body starts. We produce new skin cells to close the wound, but when the skin is in trauma or particularly inflamed these cells are produced to heal the wound as quickly as possible. Because of this rushed process, the skin produces an excess amount of melanin that is not the same tone as the rest of your skin. This kind of reaction is seen in those who have experienced acne scarring, because the skin is attempting to heal to close the wound to infection.
Hormonal changes during pregnancy or while receiving birth control are a common contributor to the development of hyperpigmentation. The increased production of oestrogen and progesterone result in boosted melanin production that is also known as melasma. It can disappear after pregnancy or following the commencement of birth control, but for others it may linger longer than it is welcome.
Chemicals peels are a highly effective way at targeting a range of conditions that include hyperpigmentation. In fact, the many signifiers of sun damage, like prematurely aged skin and pigmentation changes, are both treatable with a course of chemical peels. A peel creates a controlled wounding on the surface of the skin, exfoliating away dead and damaged skin cells. This begins the process of skin renewal, allowing the skin to produce new skin cells at its own pace. They’ve also been known to treat the appearance of both pitted and pigmented acne scars.
LED Light Therapy is also known to reduce the visible signs of hyperpigmentation. Using deeply absorbed yet safe wavelengths of near infrared light, we rejuvenate the skin by stimulating anti-inflammatory and repair processes. Near Infrared light builds strength and integrity for compromised, environmentally damaged and sensitive skin conditions. This makes it clinically effective in the treatment of sun spots, age spots, and hyperpigmentation.
Hyperpigmentation may feel permanent, but it doesn’t have to be. With specialist treatments from our skin experts in Knightsbridge, you can enjoy healthy and glowing skin. Book your consultation today on 020 7584 4777 or enquire online today.