A lot of people like to bask in the sun so they can gain a bit of color on their pale white skin, but there are times when people get darker skin without them knowing the cause why, this is called hyperpigmentation. Unlike the even tan you can get with proper sun bathing, hyperpigmentation only causes patches of your skin to change color; most of the time this condition is pretty harmless, but there are times when hyperpigmentation is a precursor to more serious diseases.
If you want to know more about this curious skin condition, here are a couple of facts about hyperpigmentation according to Beverly Hills cosmetic dermatology:
- Hyperpigmentation occurs when certain parts of your body produce more melanin than their surrounding. Melanin is a naturally-occurring chemical inside the human body that is responsible for giving people their particular skin tone and coloration. So, contrary to popular belief, hyperpigmentation is not the direct result of your skin getting burned by the sun, although it is one of the causes.
- The severity of hyperpigmentation varies from small localized spots on certain parts of the body, but it can also be as severe as to cover large areas like that of a person who has melasma of the face; in cases like this there is a huge, uneven patch of skin that is noticeably lighter or darker than the normal skin tone.
- The usual cause of hyperpigmentation is excessive sun damage, especially when the person did not apply the proper sun protection. So when you need to go out on a particularly sunny day, you should wear a wide-brimmed hat or a baseball cap to keep your face shielded from the rays of the sun, and you should apply sun block or lotion that has a rather high SPF level; a high number is required if your skin is prone to sunburns.
- Besides sun damage, hyperpigmentation can also be caused by other factors. There are times when hyperpigmentation resulted as a side effect of a laser skin procedure, as an adverse reaction to certain medications, they can even be blamed on hormonal shifts which usually happen on women who just hit puberty or is going through menopause. There are also certain cases wherein hyperpigmentation is a symptom of diabetes, so you really should have yourself checked out by a physician when you notice uneven colored patches of skin on your body.
Hopefully these five facts about hyperpigmentation were able to shed some light on the subject for you. If you ever notice that there are certain areas on your skin that are considerably darker or lighter than your actual skin tone, you should consult with a dermatologist to identify the real cause.