Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation: What Is It And How To Treat

Written by Janella Domingo Diaz, Modified October 23, 2018
post inflammatory hyperpigmentation

As much as we all love our skin looking healthy and shiny, skin disorders such as the post inflammatory hyperpigmentation PIH could pose a threat to having and keeping that skin looking lovely always as you would wish.

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Available facts indicate that hyperpigmentation is one of the main reasons for acne for which a lot of persons visit the dermatologist.

1) What Is Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH)

what is post inflammatory hyperpigmentation
PIH refers to the excessive production of melanin, the ingredients responsible for the production of pigments on the skin cells.

PIH is a situation in which hyperpigmentation caused by an inflammation or skin injury resulting in the excessive production of pigments in the layer of skin. Like in the case of melisma, PIH could be problematic and difficult to treat especially when it goes deep into the skin layer.

Also, your skin tone could play a major factor in PIH effect. People who are darker in completion are more prone to Post inflammatory hyperpigmentation PIH than those with lighter skin or glowing complexion. And it is due to the production of more melanin, having higher melanocytes for pigmentation and leading to dark spots on the layer of skin around the face, back and more.

2) What Causes Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH)?

causes post inflammatory hyperpigmentation
One of the major causes of PIH is acne. Other causes could be due to an injury, burns, psoriasis, insect bites, skin allergic reactions, and other skin damage or issues such as eczema (atopic dermatitis), etc.

3) Signs/ Symptoms Of Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation

symptoms of post inflammatory hyperpigmentation
A hyperpigmented skin due to PIH usually appears as dark red, purple or brown, gray-brown spots patches, pigmentation or discoloration around the face, chin, neck, forehead or back, the upper lip of the victim.

Other symptoms could include acne scars, sun spots, dark spots, freckles, melasma, aging spots which due to hormonal changes during pregnancy or birth control) and more.

Though, for men and women, melasma is more common in women than men due to hormonal issues and pregnancy. It, however, occurs amongst Hispanic and Indian men.

4) How Long Does It Take For Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation To Fade?

time for post inflammatory hyperpigmentation to fade
On how to get rid of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation or achieve meaningful and long-lasting treatment for PIH takes time depending on the measures adopted. But on the average, it takes not less than six to twelve months to achieve a successful depigmentation to help improve epidermal hypermelanosis and see PIH fade away.

RELATED: Get Rid Of Dark Spots On Face And Hyperpigmentation On Any Skin Color

5) How To Treat Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation

post inflammatory hyperpigmentation treatment
Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation treatment could vary depending on the severity and measures you intend to take.

A. ACE-Ferulic

The Ace Ferulic by Solvaderm provides you with advancement in clinical dermal restoration treatment. It is an award-winning product and one of the best beauty breakthroughs of 2017 for skin damage restoration as well as a photo-aging defense serum. It comes as a top-selling strain for achieving excellent treatment for Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation. Ace Ferulic is recommended dermatologists and skincare professionals worldwide.

B. Juvabrite

Solvaderm’s Juvabrite helps rejuvenate your skin cells in the fight against aging. It is an anti-aging spot remover and a pigment brightening complexion recipe with the active ingredient to restore your skin back to its healthy state.

Juvabrite is an advancement in beauty care products meant to help lighten dark spots and fade discoloration, blemishes due to UV rays exposure, acne and hormonal or hyperpigmentation caused by pregnancy or oral contraceptives.

C. Therapy and Medical help

According to the Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, medical therapy involving hydroquinone (HQ) monotherapy provides effective treatment for PIH. You could use the application of a combination of HQ and products containing an active ingredient with azelaic acid, retinoic acid, glycolic acid, sun protection cream, corticosteroids and other antioxidants to improve efficiency when applied over a period of time.

Another useful therapy for PIH is the intensely pulsed light therapy which involves the use of light energy just like in the use of a laser on targeted skin cells with chromophores on the layer of skin. It is a non-ablative technique that can work on the lower layer of skin without affecting the top layer of skin.

D. Chemical Peels

On how to get rid of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, according to the Association of American Academy of Dermatology, the use of chemical peels provide an excellent measure for the treatment of PIH, therefore, countering the arguments against the use of chemical peels for persons with dark skin types or skin tones. The procedure, however, should be carried out by a qualified dermatologist for efficiency.

Some of the benefits of the use of chemical peels include the increase in collagen production, reduced size of pores and removal of the top layer of skin for new skin to grow and elimination of excess oil on the skin surface.

The recovery time could be faster because it involves applying products with beneficial acidic content to help replenish the skin surface. But the procedure will involve several visits to the dermatologist. These useful acids include antioxidants, salicylic acid for PIH acne, mandelic acid for hyperpigmentation caused PIH and melisma, trichloroacetic acid (TCA) for actinic keratosis, UV rays damage, needle or toothpick peels for TCA application.

E. Vitamins

Products rich in vitamin B3, in particular, could be quite helpful when trying to know how to heal post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. It helps against aging, regulates oil production and helps keep the skin moisturized.

Vitamin C protects against UV rays and helps reverse sun damage and brightens skin.

Vitamins A and C can become effective and active ingredients for the treatment of melisma as well as aid cell production.

6) What Helps With Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation?

sun protection for hyperpigmentation
These useful tips can help manage post inflammatory hyperpigmentation acne

Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation on the back, face, neck, chin and the forehead could use a wide variety of sunscreen products with Sun protection factor (SPF) 15 and above as essential part of treating post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation acne.

Sun Exposure to UV rays from the sun can make one susceptible and worsen PIH conditions. The use of sun protection or avoidance of too much exposure to direct sunlight can help remedy the situation.

A comprehensive post inflammatory hyperpigmentation treatment must include an effort to repair under the layer of skin to restore skin cells to an original state of health.

It is best for patients to go through one to two months pre-treatment procedure before the commencement of chemical peels. It could be by topical medications at home or light chemical peels application by the dermatologist before main treatment commences.

As simple as it might seem, it is always best to see a dermatologist for identifying and treating Post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation acne could be as a result of other skin problems or conditions and since there are varied skin types with different skin tones you might end up with the worst problem due to poor diagnosis and treating the wrong ailment.

“Hope you find the post helpful and we are excited to hear what you think of it!”

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