Skin pigmentation can be described as a congenital vascular lesion. The discolored and dark spots or patches on the skin are referred to as Hyperpigmentation. Whenever there is excess melanin production, which forms deposits on certain areas of the skin, it results in patches or spots that are darker in color as compared to the surrounding skin tone.
This discoloration of the skin is generally not related to exposure to sunlight. However, it can be caused due to the Ultra Violet rays that increase melanin production and lead to a tanned skin tone.
During this process, the body is expected to regulate the excess melanin production, but when this does not happen, it leads to excessive melanin. The problems related to pigmentation are skin discoloration and the appearance of blotchy spots and patches on the face as well as body.
There are quite a few treatments available for pigmentation. Mentioned below are some treatments for Hyperpigmentation removal.
Microdermabrasion: This treatment for Hyperpigmentation is primarily an exfoliating procedure which treats wrinkles and fine lines, helps smooth rough textured skin, reduces the appearance of scarring, and reduces pore size as well as superficial Hyperpigmentation, which is also called age spots. Microdermabrasion makes it easier for the high-tech skincare products to penetrate the deep layers of the skin and helps build collagen, which results in a youthful appearance.
Chemical Peels: These are amongst the most common ways to treat patches and dark spots on the skin. A chemical peel helps remove dead skin, cleanup dirt and unclog pores that are blocked due to whiteheads and blackheads. It also helps treat skin discoloration and gives the skin a fresher look. These peels are of three types, superficial peel, medium and deep peel. Superficial peel contains salicylic, glycolic or alpha hydroxy acids, used for treating minor Hyperpigmentation. The medium peels normally contain Trichloroacetic acid. Deep peel contains Phenol which is one of the most effective chemicals. You need to follow some precautions and take proper care during the recovery period following treatment.
Laser Treatment: One of the most effective and common treatment for pigmentation is laser treatment. Laser treatment for pigmentation involves an intense laser beam to target the pigmented skin areas. The laser helps destroy excess pigmentation and provides a uniform skin tone. A dermatologist first attempts to erase or fade the discoloration using relatively mild treatments, such as chemical peels, skin lighteners or Microdermabrasion. However, if these therapies prove unsuccessful, the dermatologist will recommend laser treatment. Laser treatment is more precise as the doctor is able to control the intensity as well as the degree of penetration of the laser beam.
There are two kinds of laser light treatments that are used for the treatment of Hyperpigmentation, IPL or Intense Pulsed Light treatment and lasers. Both these therapies make use of the same principle in order to eliminate the unwanted pigmentation. However, Intense Pulse Light treatment emits light in multiple wavelengths, whereas laser treatment emits only a single wavelength of light. Both these treatments are very effective and have their own pros and cons depending upon the type of Hyperpigmentation you have, the area where it is situated as well as how long it has been around.
Laser treatment for pigmentation is generally most effective for treating discrete lesions as well as thickened age spots. Intense Pulse Light can be a better alternative in case the discoloration is spread across a wider area of the body. Scabbing is usually a lot more prominent following laser treatment in comparison to intense pulse light. However, patients might require more IPL treatment sessions in the long run.
Based on the kind of skin discoloration an individual is dealing with, it may require a single or several treatment sessions. For instance, age spots usually respond very quickly, however birthmarks often need repeated sessions. Whatever type of laser treatment you and the doctor agree on, the doctor will zap the hyper pigmented area and then vaporize the discolored skin using a very short burst of high-energy pulsed light. For larger patches, it might require longer pulses.
Laser Skin Resurfacing: If there is post inflammatory Hyperpigmentation and deep scarring, you will require a laser skin resurfacing treatment. This procedure is also called carbon dioxide resurfacing. In this procedure, laser beams penetrate deep into the skin to remove multiple layers of skin. Therefore, the recovery period is a little longer as compared to regular laser treatment.