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Sarasota Dermatology Blog

Hyperpigmentation and Hydroquinone – Treating your spots

Posted on 10. Sep, 2015 by in Lentigo, Skin Care, Skin Conditions, Sun Spots

Hyperpigmentation or darkening of the skin, is a very common skin concern for all ages.

There are many factors that contribute to hyperpigmentation – some examples being sun damage, genetics, acne and inflammation of the skin. Age spots or brown spots are examples of sun damage.  Melasma is a hormonal condition that presents as symmetric brown patches.  Acne and injuries to the skin, such as facial waxing and harsh facial products can produce post inflammatory hyperpigmentation or PIH.

One of the most widely used treatments for correcting hyperpigmentation is Hydroquinone.  Hydroquinone is a skin lightening topical ingredient.  It is a naturally occurring antioxidant that is in many of our daily foods.  Coffee, red

Hyperpigmentation and Hydroquinone – Treating your spots

Hyperpigmentation and Hydroquinone – Treating your spots

ne, berries, broccoli and onions are just a few of the things you can find hydroquinone in.

Hydroquinone works by suppressing the melanocytes or color producing cells in the dermis of our skin.

There has been much controversy concerning the use of the topical for many years.  Despite this controversy there have been no recorded reports of anyone developing cancer from hydroquinone. It has been used in the United States for over 50 years on millions of patients desiring a clearer complexion. Over the counter concentrations are available at 2% or and a 4% and above concentration requires a physician’s prescription.  It has been considered the gold standard in treating hyperpigmentation when used under the guidance of a physician. And contrary to popular belief it is not banned in Europe.  It is regulated at being prescription strength at a 2% concentration.

Obagi skin care offers several skin care regimens that will lighten damaged skin and help to maintain the results.  Using products to treat hyperpigmentation is not an overnight fix and can take a few weeks to see improvement.  There are many other ways to address the removal of hyperpigmentation, but to insure the discoloration will not return, hydroquinone can be a smart choice to include in your skin care as well as remembering to always protect your skin from the sun’s rays.

To see if hydroquinone is right for the treatment of your hyperpigmentation consult your skin care professional.



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