Melanin is a brown pigment produced by melanocytesand gives skin its colour. When an excess of melanin forms deposits in the skin, it leads to hyperpigmentation in which darker patches of skin appear in contrast to the normal surrounding skin. Several treatments are available for skin pigmentation.
Common Pigmentation Concerns
Tan: Sun exposure causes an increased production of melanin that darkens skin colour. This uneven skin colouring is called ‘tan’ that is commonly found on the forehead, outer arms, and temples. Avoiding prolonged sun exposure and using protective clothing and sunscreens can prevent skin tanning.
Melasma: Dark, irregular brown patches known as ‘melasma’are commonly found on the forehead, nose, upper cheeks, and upper lip. Various causes of this skin pigmentation include birth control pills, exposure to sunlight, hormone replacement therapy, pregnancy, stress, and thyroid disease.
Freckles: Brown or black spots are formed on the skin due to clusters of concentrated melanin. Areas of skin exposed to sunlight, including arms, chest, and shoulders develop freckles. Fair-skinned people aresusceptible to freckles. Certain genetic variations or recessive genetic traits can also cause freckles.
Types of Pigmentation Treatment
Treatment for Tan: Chemical peels, light-based treatments, Pixel laser treatment, and medications can effectively treat tan by removing old layers of skin to promote skin regeneration. When the tanned skin layers containing excessive melanin are removed, you will notice a visible reduction in skin tan.
Treatment for Melasma: Glycolic peels and trichloroacetic acid peels, light-based treatments, lasers (Pixel, Q-switched Nd: YAG), medications, and sunscreens can treat melasma. Factors such as the duration of melasma’s onset, pigmentation depth, and lifestyle affect the response to melasma.
Treatment for Freckles: Light-based treatments such as Super Skin Rejuvenation and Q-switched Nd: YAG laser have a high success rate and low risk of scarring. These are quite effective in reaching deep dermal layers and specifically targeting the pigment (melanin) without harming the surrounding skin.
Benefits of Pigmentation Treatment
- Proven treatment for removing unwanted pigmentation
- Reduced age spots, freckles, and dullness
- Even skin tone and a smooth appearance
- Radiant and youthful look
- Safe and comfortable treatment with little to no downtime