The danger of using skin whitening creams
In this new world of glamour, everyone wants to look beautiful and young. Skin lightening creams can help you to overcome unwanted darkening and dark spots. But this lightening comes with some health risks.
How do they work?
They work by decreasing the amount of melanin in the skin. Melanin is a type of skin pigment made by cells called melanocytes. Melanin gives a dark colour to your skin. Bleaching creams work by lowering the number of melanocytes from your skin. Most of the skin whitening contains three types of ingredients, hydroquinone, Vitamin C and glycolic acid. Hydroquinone decreases melanocytes from your skin. Vitamin C act as a detoxification agent that can lower the melanin production in the skin. Glycolic acid works as an exfoliating agent. It helps to remove the dead cells from the skin and helps to remove dark spots.
What are the health risks?
Most of the skin brightening creams contain hydroquinone, mercury, and corticosteroids. These ingredients have serious skin effects. People who used skin lighting creams have reported skin irritation and dermatitis. People have also reported acne because of the presence of corticosteroids. The main side effect of using skin whitening agents are sores and scarring. Skin whitening creams can cause the skin to break. Which will lead to redness and pain that is difficult to manage.
Hydroquinone can cause a serious skin condition known as exogenous ochronosis. This skin condition causes the skin to appear blue and black and can result in permanent skin discolouration.
FDA has raised serious concerns about the presence of mercury content in the skin whitening creams. FDA has limited the amount of mercury to only 1 ppm. Those products exceeding this limit are not safe to use and causes a skin reaction.
The large quantity of mercury, when applied to the skin, can cause depression, headache, numbness, and tingling sensation. Moreover, continuous exposure to mercury can damage kidneys and causes the nephrotic syndrome, a serious disease of kidneys.
Skin lightening creams can help you to overcome unwanted darkening and dark spots. But this lightening comes with some health risks. The efficacy of skin lightening creams hasn’t approved by any research. So, always consult your doctor before applying any skin lightening creams or try herbal treatment first.