Hyperpigmentation is a condition where patches of the skin becomes darker than the surrounding area. It can be caused by many factors, like trauma to the skin and formation of scars, acne, extreme exposure to the sun, and certain diseases. However, hyperpigmentation is not always permanent. There are things you can do to help combat the appearance of dark blemishes on your skin:
- Stay out of the sun – One of the lasting effects of too much sun exposure is hyperpigmentation. You want to limit your time outdoors between the hours of 10 AM to 4 PM, when the sun’s UV rays are at their strongest. If you do have to go outside, you should wear protective clothing and apply sunscreen. If possible, stay in the shade even when outdoors.
- Look into doing chemical peels – One of the most popular treatments provided by dermatologists is skin peels. A skin peel is a quick and easy treatment where a licensed dermatologist applies chemicals and substances to peel away the topmost layer of your skin. By doing so, the blemishes and dark spots are peeled away, revealing younger and more supple-looking layers of your skin underneath.
- Exfoliate Regularly – An at-home alternative to chemical peels is exfoliation. You can either use a specialized tool that scrubs away the topmost layer of your skin, or a chemical that would mimic the process of a chemical peel. Dermatologists recommend exfoliating 3-4 times per week.
- Inquire about skin bleaching agents – HQRA, or hydroquinone, is a bleaching agent that is available by prescription only. It is topically used and is deemed safe to use on the skin. If you have severe hyperpigmentation, you can ask your dermatologist if a prescription hydroquinone is necessary.