by MarshaneilSoumi D’ Rozario | 20th May, 2019
Quite often, one might experience a dark patch on the skin. It can be a point of worry as it gets darker with advancing age. Depending on the right cause of pigmentation, treatment is given. Pigmentation can be defined as discoloration of the skin due to excess deposition of melanin resulting in very dark patches, which is called Hyperpigmentation. Lack of melanin in the skin is known as Hypopigmentation which results in white patches. Skin pigmentation disorders cause change the colour of your skin. Melanin is made by cells in the skin and is the pigment responsible for the skin’s colour. Hyperpigmentation is caused when melanin is overproduced in certain spots on the skin, causing them to look darker than your natural skin tone.
Dr.Saumya Shetty Hegde, Dermatologist at Roots Skin Clinic talks extensively about Hyperpigmentation. Hyperpigmentation is a common skin condition that can affect any skin type. Pigmentation Disordercan be classified into Hyperpigmentation and Hypopigmentation. The different kinds of Hypopigmentation Disorder includes Albinism and Vitiligo. Many chronic skin diseases also heal with Hypopigmentation. There are no prior symptoms visible as such.
Dark spots are due to excess Melanin.Certain types of Hyperpigmentation are:
• Melasma - Large patches of darkened skin may appear on the forehead, face, and stomach.
• Freckles – They are small brown spots on your skin. It is derived from ultraviolet (UV) radiation stimulation.
• Ageing spots- They commonly appear on the face and hands, or on sun-exposed areas of the body.
• Acanthosis nigricans- The skin turns dark, especially in places like your armpits, groin, and neck.
• Photopigmentation - Photopigments are unstable pigments that undergo a chemical change when they absorb light.
• Pigmentation secondary to many chronic diseases likePsoriasis
• Lichen planus
The symptoms of Hyperpigmentation can be itching and dry scaly patches with dark spots. It can be a chronic problem affecting the hands and legs. It develops because of genetic predisposition and antibodies, which are developed in the skin, and it starts destroying your own cells. There can be associated complications to Hyperpigmentation like crusting, severe itching, ulcers, and mental stress. It is advisable to consult the doctor to find the right cause.
Home Remedies for dark patches:
• Ripened papaya or banana: They help in reducing skin pigmentation problem. Papaya has an enzyme called papain which has exfoliating properties. They help in removing dead cells and increase the growth of new cells.
• Potatoes: Raw potatoes lighten stubborn dark patches. Potato contains an enzyme called catecholase which curbs excessive melanin production within an individual.
• Lemon juice mixed with honey: It is a natural bleaching agent. Lemons contain antioxidant properties. It not only protects the skin from UV damage but also lightens dark spots.
• Apple cider vinegar and water: Apple cider has astringent properties which help to restore the natural colour of the skin. It also helps in naturally making the skin radiant. Apple Cider Vinegar also contains beta-carotene which is effective in treating the damage caused to the skin.
• Turmeric with milk: Applying Turmeric with milk is a common practice in India. Turmeric has medicinal properties, and it helps to balance the pH level of the skin and adds a radiant glow to it.
• Moisturize your skin: Use a moisturizing soap and drink plenty of water. Apply oil half an hour before a shower and shower in warm water
• If the dark patches are caused due to burns, it's better to visit the doctor to confirm the severity.
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