Skin conditions can majorly affect a person’s self-esteem. One of the most common issues: hyperpigmentation. We've all heard the term before, but what is it, exactly?
Hyperpigmentation causes dark spots on the face, hands, and other visible parts of the body that have been exposed to the sun's rays. Not only can it cause insecurities, but it can be very difficult to hide as these spots form in different shapes and sizes, with colors ranging from light brown to black.
There are many types of hyperpigmentation, but the following are the most common:
Pigmentation spots are age spots that occur as a result of exposure to sunlight. This is why they mostly appear in parts of the body that are usually exposed, such as the face, hands and arms. These are usually small, darkened areas of skin.
Melasma or chloasma is often called a "pregnancy mask" because it affects 90% of pregnant women. It occurs as a consequence of hormonal influences during pregnancy and contraception. It causes dark spots of irregular shapes on the face or hands, which can be large in size.
Gradual hyperpigmentation occurs when a flat area of discoloration remains after the skin injury has healed. It is a common occurrence among people who suffer from acne, and it can also be caused by cosmetic treatments such as dermabrasion, laser treatment, and chemical peels.
There are other factors that can darken parts of the skin - such as moles, scars, scars, sun or actinic keratosis, and skin cancer - but they’re not considered forms of hyperpigmentation.
So, how does hyperpigmentation occur? It develops due to excessive production of melanin—a pigment that gives natural color to our skin, hair, and eyes—on certain parts of the skin. Many factors cause this overproduction, but the main ones can be related to sun exposure, genetic factors, age, hormonal influences, and injuries or inflammation of the skin. It can also be a symptom of certain diseases as well.
Naturally, limiting the time you spend in the sun, wearing protective clothing, and using sunscreen with a high protection factor, both UVA and UVB, can help reduce the risk of hyperpigmentation and prevent worsening of existing dark spots.
Battling hyperpigmentation is possible in many ways, but red light therapy has proven to be the most effective form of treatment. It’s no secret that most of us lack vitamin D, at least in the Northern Hemisphere, yet light therapy has done wonders in vitamin D production. But red light therapy has shown to be helpful in even more ways than you could imagine.
Red light therapy works by stimulating cells through red light. Mitochondria in the skin cells can absorb the light particles which emit through the red light, and this can help them produce more adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is the energy source for all cells. By improving cellular energy, cells repair themselves quickly, returning the skin back to normal pigmentation levels.
In turn, collagen levels increase, working to reduce other skin conditions, including rosacea. Elastin levels also increase, which helps fight against aging, giving the skin a lift and youthful glow.
Though there are many ways to treat hyperpigmentation, ideally, you want a treatment that’s the least invasive and the most effective. Luna’s red light therapy devices are designed to treat a variety of skin conditions, including hyperpigmentation. Our devices are MDA-certified and FDA-approved, ensuring that your treatment will be safe for your skin while providing you the best results.