Acne is a common skin condition that affects millions of people worldwide, and it can lead to the development of hyperpigmentation.
Hyperpigmentation is a condition in which patches of skin become darker than the surrounding skin. It is a common problem for those who have suffered from acne, and it can cause distress and lower self-esteem.
Acne hyperpigmentation occurs when the skin produces too much melanin, which is the pigment responsible for giving skin its color.
When a pimple or acne lesion heals, it can leave behind a dark spot or patch on the skin.
This is because the inflammation caused by the acne triggers the production of melanin in the affected area. The result is a dark, discolored mark that can take several months to fade.
There are two types of acne hyperpigmentation: Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH) and Post-Inflammatory Erythema (PIE).
This type of hyperpigmentation is caused by an increase in melanin production after an acne lesion has healed.
PIH can range in color from light brown to dark brown, and it can take several months to fade.
PIE is a type of hyperpigmentation that is caused by the dilation of blood vessels in the affected area.
It appears as a red or pink mark on the skin and can take up to two years to fade.
One of the most important things you can do to prevent hyperpigmentation is to avoid picking and squeezing acne lesions. When you pick or squeeze an acne lesion, you can cause trauma to the skin, which can lead to inflammation and increased melanin production.
This can result in dark spots and uneven skin tone that can last for months or even years. To prevent hyperpigmentation, it's important to let acne lesions heal naturally, and to avoid touching your face or picking at your skin.
Sun exposure can exacerbate hyperpigmentation, and it's important to protect your skin from UV rays to prevent further damage. Wearing sunscreen with an SPF of at least 50 every day can help prevent hyperpigmentation and other types of skin damage.
Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB rays, and apply it liberally to all exposed skin.
Learn more about Dr Edwin's recommended sunblock here
There are many products available that can help prevent hyperpigmentation and improve the overall appearance of your skin.
Look for products that contain skin-lightening ingredients like kojic acid, vitamin C, and niacinamide. These ingredients work by inhibiting melanin production, and can help reduce the appearance of dark spots and uneven skin tone.
Learn more about Pigmentation Skincare here
Aggressive cleansing can strip the skin of its natural oils, which can lead to inflammation and hyperpigmentation. When cleansing your skin, be gentle and avoid using harsh scrubbing brushes or exfoliants.
Use a mild, non-irritating cleanser and avoid hot water, which can also strip the skin of its natural oils.
Topical lightening creams containing active ingredients such as retinoids and hydroquinone can be effective in treating hyperpigmentation.
Retinoids work by increasing cell turnover, which can help to fade dark marks. Hydroquinone works by inhibiting the production of melanin in the affected area.
Laser therapy can be effective in treating hyperpigmentation.
Pigment Lasers work by targeting the melanin in the affected area, causing it to break down. This can help to fade dark marks and improve skin texture.
Learn more about the PICOsecond laser here
Learn more about Pigmentation lasers here
Lasers can be an effective treatment for PIE because they can target and break down the excess blood vessels that are responsible for the red or pink discoloration.
Vascular Lasers work by emitting a focused beam of light that penetrates the skin and is absorbed by the hemoglobin in the blood vessels. This absorption causes the blood vessels to heat up and coagulate, or clot, which ultimately leads to their destruction.
Once the excess blood vessels are destroyed, the red or pink discoloration associated with PIE can be significantly reduced.
Learn more about the Pro-Yellow Laser here
Every clinic offers different treatment options for Acne Hyperpigmentation. No one clinic is the same as the other. If you want to make sure that hyperpigmentation treatments are performed safely and effectively, make sure that the clinic is experienced in offering such lasers. The clinic should also offer information on the various types of pigmentation and vascular lasers before proceeding.