Pigmentation marks, although often distressing to the sufferer (especially on the face) are in most cases, a temporary condition.
Mild cases will often fade slowly over a period of anything from a few weeks to a few months. Some cases unfortunately, can take a good deal longer to fade, with the most severe often taking many months, even years to disappear altogether.
So what causes of pigmentation on the face?
Pigmentation marks are caused by the body over producing the chemical “melanin” when trying to repair itself, this chemical is responsible for the color or pigment in your skin. The result is dark patches where the skin has recovered from a trauma of some kind.
Here is a look at the main causes of pigmentation marks on the skin, and a few things you can do to protect your skin.
- Uv Rays (The Sun).
It’s true that the sun is an excellent source of vitamin D, and can make you look and feel great, but unfortunately, over exposure to the sun is the biggest cause of pigmentation marks on the skin. Cold and windy conditions are just as detrimental to your skin, and it’s easy to forget that the suns rays can be just as powerful in the winter as in the summer. Your face and hands are exposed to UV light all year round, so applying a creams and moisturizers containing a high SPF (sun protection factor) year round is a must.
- Skin Trauma.
Skin trauma will almost always cause pigmentation marks. Acne and its related problems is the biggest factor in cases of skin trauma. After an outbreak of acne, the sufferer will have dark spots and patches where the skin has healed, this is a condition known as Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation. The condition is usually temporary, but the cycle of outbreaks and healing can be distressing for the sufferer. Prescription strength medications such as azelaic acid and benzoyl peroxide will help in getting the acne under control before treating the pigmentation marks.
- Pregnancy and Birth Control
Pregnancy causes major hormonal changes and imbalances in a woman’s body. These massive hormonal changes can in many cases cause darker skin pigmentation. It is often seen as brown patches of skin on the forehead, cheeks and nose. Less frequently, patches can be found on the stomach. This is a very common condition known as Melasma, and it’s often called “the mask of pregnancy“. Melasma has also been known to affect men, but only rarely.
Birth control pills often cause hormonal imbalance and will frequently cause pigmentation issues. Trying a different type or brand will often help.
Some people will suffer from hereditary pigmentation issues. Check to see if you have any family history of any pigmentation marks. Freckles are a common example of hereditary pigmentation on pale skin. Mild freckling isn’t usually a problem, but severe freckling can be treating the same as any other type of pigmentation problem.
There are others, but these are the main causes of pigmentation marks on the skin. Darker skin patches are a concern to the sufferer, but take comfort in the fact that every case is treatable.