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How to Treat Hyperpigmentation

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Close up of before and after of women receiving Hyperpigmentation

Have you noticed dark patches forming on your skin in places like your hands or face? Hyperpigmentation could be the reason. This term covers a group of skin discolouration concerns, like sunspots, acne scarring, or lingering inflammation from skin conditions. 

While hyperpigmentation is not contagious or dangerous to your health, it can cause some woes when it comes to self-image. Let’s look at the causes of hyperpigmentation and some of the ways it can be treated by a professional

What is hyperpigmentation, what are the causes, and what treatments are available

Why Does Hyperpigmentation Happen?

Hyperpigmentation refers to when patches of the skin darken due to more melanin production. Certain factors trigger the skin to produce extra melanin, which gives that patch a darker appearance. Why would the body produce more melanin? It can happen for a few different reasons, as we’ll see below. 

  • Inflammation or skin trauma: think pimples, eczema, bug bites, and deep cuts. If you pick at your bug bites or scratch your skin relentlessly, inflammation can occur. This then signals melanin cells to overproduce, leaving a darker spot on that area after healing.
  • UV exposure: Sure, you can achieve a nice tan, but often your time spent out in the sun does more damage than good. When ultraviolet (UV) rays hit your skin, it triggers extra melanin as a means of protecting itself from damage. Too much UV exposure encourages the production of darker sunspots.
  • Melasma: This is a form of hyperpigmentation that commonly develops during pregnancy, but it can happen to anyone. It’s triggered by hormonal changes and genetics, and worsened by sun exposure and heat.

The Hyperpigmentation Umbrella

Several appearances of darkened skin can be considered hyperpigmentation. This condition includes age spots, sunspots, darkening from eczema or psoriasis, acne scarring, and more. If you have some pesky dark spots you’d rather not see in your reflection, book a consultation with us. Our expert dermatologists can guide you towards the best course of action for your skin.

Treatment Options to Even Out Your Skin

If you seek an even skin tone, treatments are available to help restore consistent pigmentation. Of course, it’s best to speak with a professional first to find out the best course of action for your goals. 

Because deeper pigmentation may be harder to treat, results will depend on the severity and depth of your pigmentation. Different treatment options and medical-grade skincare products exist for skin discoloration. Our team will happily create a plan that aligns with your goals. For in-office treatment, we offer the following methods.

Fontona SP Dynamis Laser

We can use the Fontona laser to remove a thin layer of damaged skin to reveal improved and even-toned skin. This laser enables us to lift the layers with melanin deposits, allowing the skin to lighten and eventually remove the deposits.

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL)

Intense pulsed light (IPL) technology can treat skin concerns using rapid, powerful flashes of light. The light energy penetrates below the skin’s surface, where the melanin has developed. The heat and light breaks the melanin down into small particles, which will then either get eliminated through the body’s lymphatic system or turn into peppering (which looks like coffee grounds) that will naturall fall away within a week or so.

Vivier Jessner Chemical Peel

This chemical peel works by removing the top darker layers of your skin to uncover the more evenly-toned skin underneath.

The Vivier Jessner is considered a medium-depth peel—targeting the top two layers of your skin cells: the top layer of your skin, the epidermis, and the upper portion of the middle layer, the dermis.

Women using hand to protect herself from sun

Sun Protection, Always!

We will preach the gospel once more: sun protection remains one of the best ways to defend your skin from damage and pigmentation concerns. UV rays worsen hyperpigmentation, so it is essential to cover your skin with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or higher every 2 hours. Wear a hat and stylin’ sunglasses to shade your face from harmful rays. 

Let Us Help You

For anyone noticing darker spots developing, get in touch with our team. We’ll do our best to create a treatment plan and reveal a smoother, more evenly-toned appearance.

Written by Dr. Bobby Sreenivasan

Dr. Sreenivasan is a graduate of the University of Alberta Medical Program where he completed his residency in 2004. His expertise in cosmetic procedures such as BOTOX, fillers, PRP, skin rejuvenation, and hair restoration surgery along with his keen interest in preventative care medicine with a focus on bioidentical hormone balancing means he has contributed to the self-confidence and vitality of thousands of men and women by providing natural results. Outside the clinic, Dr. Sreenivasan enjoys running, golfing, travelling and spending time with his two sons.
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