Hyper pigmentation refers to skin that has turned darker than normal where the change that has occurred is unrelated to sun exposure. Hyper pigmentation is caused due to excessive production of melanin.
Hyper pigmentation may be caused by internal and external causes. Internal causes include hormonal imbalances such as pregnancy. An external cause for hyper pigmentation is sun exposure. Sots of brown may appear with sun exposure without the use of a sunblock.
There are a few types of hyper-pigmentation that is based on the cause of the excess melanin and its appearance on the skin. These include melasma, age spots or liver spots, freckles, and post-inflammatory hyper-pigmentation. It is also related with a number of diseases such as Addison’s disease and other sources of adrenal insufficiency, in which the hormones induce melanin synthesis.
Hyper-pigmentation treatment – Skin Whiteners
- Topical Whitening / Bleaching creams – Although Hydroquinone is one of the best-established topical agents for reducing skin pigmentation it is now a banned substance in most countries around the world. Their are excellent alternatives however, Arbutin, Kojic, Licorice, Vitamin C to name but a few. Most creams will take several weeks to produce results because even though the synthesis of new melanin is blocked quickly, the existing melanin takes a relatively long time to migrate out of the skin in the process of natural exfoliation.
- Hydroxy Acid Peels – They increase cell renewal rate and correct hyper pigmentation marks. Alpha hydroxy acids are water soluble acids and can help remove hyper-pigmentation.
- Laser resurfacing – Normal laser skin resurfacing works by evaporating the first few layers of damaged skin to leave behind a fresh, evenly toned skin. Hydroquinone or mild chemical peels are often recommended before laser resurfacing for best results.
- Intense pulsed light – IPL is a type laser that leaves no scares, can sometimes heals freckles or other mild sun spots without using peels or hydroquinone creams beforehand.
Skin hyper-pigmentation is not a life threatening condition. Nevertheless, you should consult with your doctor to confirm that it is not melanoma, a form of skin cancer. In addition, you should see your doctor if you experience unexplained darkening or lightening or any skin sore or lesion that changes the color of the skin.
Botanical Garden’s high technology has produced two potent whiteners, maybe the most potent in the market today, and they do not contain hydroquinone.