Hyperpigmentation is a hormonal condition in which the skin becomes dark and appears in small or large patches across the body.

Hyperpigmentation is not harmful but can be an indicator of the existence of other medical conditions. It is mainly seen amongst the women suffering from estrogen and progesterone hormone imbalances.

Hyperpigmentation are of several types like Melasma, sunspots and post inflammatory hyperpigmentation.

Melasma is caused due to hormonal changes in pregnancy. It can occur on any body part, but more prominent on the face and abdomen.  

Sunspots occur due to excessive sun exposure, also known as liver spots or solar lentigines. These spots appear usually on the body parts exposed to the sun, such as face, neck, hands etc.

Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) is caused due to skin injuries.

Hyperpigmentation occurs due to overproduction of melanin and estrogen and progesterone imbalances in the body. Medications and chemotherapy drugs can also cause hyperpigmentation as a side effect.

Endocrine diseases (Addison's disease), pregnancy, extreme sun exposure are the other causes that can also increase melanin production in the body. 

Symptoms Of Hyperpigmentation:

Symmetrical brown coloured patches appear on the face, neck, forearms in melasma.

In PIH, patches appear on injured or inflamed areas of skin.

Spots are usually black or light brown and may grow dark with exposure to sunlight.

Sunspots appear as light brown freckles on face and other sun-exposed body parts.

Treatment:

Medication with hydroquinone and retinoic acid are used to treat hyperpigmentation. It may take a few months to lighten the dark spots. Laser therapy is also used to treat hyperpigmentation. Homecare remedies and use of sunscreen are also helpful.