Thursday, January 1, 2009

What’s that Dark Spot – Facial Skin Care Hints for Dealing with Hyperpigmentation

Do you have dark patches of skin on your face? You may be suffering from a condition called Hyperpigmentation. Hyperpigmentation happens when your body over produces melanin in your skin. Melanin is the naturally occurring chemical that is causes your skin to brown – usually as a result of tanning. Unfortunately, Hyperpigmentation may be one of the many menopause symptoms you experience.

We usually have an indication that Hyperpigmentation may be approaching and are able to implement some facial skin care to prevent it. Freckles are a sign of hyperpigmentation. While these little freckles might not be a big deal, as we get older the freckles often darken or become bigger. Another common symptom is age spots. These age spots are usually found on the face or the hands. Both freckles and age spots are signs of sun damage.

Hyperpigmentation can happen to anyone, regardless of age or race and can be found on any part of the body. Sun damage is certainly a factor in hyperpigmentation, but there are a number of other factors that can contribute to dark, uneven spots on the skin.

Of course, genetics is a factor in hyperpigmentation. If you have fair skin, light hair and eyes, you will always have to pay special attention to keeping your skin from being damaged by the sun. But hyperpigmentation can also be caused by hormonal changes in the body, which is why it becomes more common as menopause symptoms.

During pregnancy, women may experience a form of hyperpigmentation that is called the “mask of pregnancy”. This may occur on the face or on the abdomen. Taking birth control pills will sometimes mimic pregnancy, and can cause hyperpigmentation. Often, after the pregnancy or after you stop taking birth control pills, the hyperpigmentation goes away.

As you age and go through perimenopause or begin to experience menopause symptoms, the changes in hormone levels may cause hyperpigmentation patches to occur. Unfortunately, these patches don’t disappear or even lighten on their own. There are a number of expensive facial skin care options, including dermabrasion or laser treatments that help these dark patches.

There’s another facial skin care option that could work wonders on hyperpigmentation problems. Look for products that contain hydroquinone. Hydroquinone lightens dark skin patches – it’s actually a bleaching agent. You can find products with Hydroquinone in most cosmetic lines, or you can visit a dermatologist for a medication that contains a stronger bleaching agent.

In addition to using bleaching agents, you have to be extra careful to prevent sun damage or exposure. Because your skin is already susceptible to sun damage and hyperpigmentation, you must be vigilant to always use sun block, wear hats, and generally minimize your exposure to the sun.

Hyperpigmentation can be avoided or minimized with an active approach of sun awareness, good facial skin care, and lightening agents. You’ll probably never be free of hyperpigmentation, but you can certainly lighten it to the point that it’s practically invisible.

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