Dark circles and its solution!
(Author : Dr. Swapnil Rane)

What are dark circles?

Dark circles is a condition seen commonly due to multiple factors including lifestyle habits, improper nutrition due to dietary imbalance, allergies, disturbed or insufficient sleep, medical conditions, etc. Dark circles are also termed as under eye circles or lower eyelid bags; medically it is termed as infra-orbital hyper pigmentation or infra-orbital pigmentation. Although the condition is symptomless or brings no limitation in day to day life, it is aesthetically more significant as it hinders personal and professional life because of the unpleasant appearance.

What causes dark circles?

Amongst the major reason of peri-orbital hyper pigmentation clinically sleep is the most contributing factor noted. Due to inadequate or improper sleep habits the blood vessels under the eyes lose its stability and the muscle orbicularis occuli surrounding the eyeball gets weakened and flaccid; this leads to loss of elasticity of muscle along with pigmentation or darkening of skin under the eyes.

In some medical conditions like disturbed thyroid levels, swelling below the lower eye lids is commonly seen as a symptom. While in allergic conditions, itching and disturbance to the local tissue structure around the eye margins.

How to get rid of dark circles?

There are multiple choices of treatments available along with some home remedies also that offer good relief; but the underlying condition must be resolved to get rid of it completely.

Sleep and a healthy lifestyle is a must to it, this will surely keep you away from dark circles on your face. In cases where dark circles have caused hyper-pigmentation of darkening of skin too much to be controlled with home remedies and only good sleep does not help, it is always better to take treatment.


Home remedies to get rid of dark circles:

  • Sleep is the best solution to dark circles. As it first starts with lack of sleep, it is best to correct your sleep routine. This helps in restoring health and also lowers stress levels.
  • Yoga Nidra or Yogic practice of meditation will help calm down the mental processes and intitiate sleep better. Thus improving the sleep quality and also working on dark circles.
  • Application of almond oil followed by a gentle massage for a couple of minutes if done regularly can help you get rid of the condition or at least improve the appearance. As almond oil is a rich source of vitamin E, it helps to restore the skin elasticity and complexion.
  • Apply a homemade cucumber extract. Cucumber is a mild astringent and is also smoothening to skin. To make cucumber first keep the cucumber in a refrigerator and let it cool. Then remove the seeds along with its pulp, mix it properly to make a homogeneous mixture (you can also add vit E capsule to it). Apply the mixture on below your lower eye lid and make sure you do not apply it on the eyelashes as it gets hardened after drying. Take a short nap for approximately 15-20 mins. Wash your face with room temperature water. For better results do it daily in the afternoon before meals.
  • Rose water toner – rose water is cool in potency and is a natural tonner to your skin. Use cotton pads to soak rose water in it and leave them on your eyes covering the portion of dark circles as well. Leave it for 15 mins and the wipe your face with a wet wipe. You can do it on daily basis as it also sooths the eyes.
  • Potato is a natural bleaching agent. A thin slice of raw potato can be used to rub around the puffiness of eyes and cotton pads soaked in raw potato juice can be kept on the darkened under eye area. It is advisable to do it 2 to 3 times a week. Same can be done by adding tomato juice to the cotton pads to be applied.


Treatment options for dark circles and puffy eye bags at clinics:

There is a wide range of options for treating under eye pigmentation, depending on the severity of the condition and other general health conditions line of treatment is decided. The first approach is to restore sleep and facilitate appropriate rest to the muscular structure. Internal herbal supplements can be given to improve sleep quality and topical applications can be given to improve the complexion of the under eye area.

Dermal fillers are another option that can give instant results by injecting it in the area below the lower eyelid. Although it has a good result but there is a chance of allergy to the medicine or asymmetrical appearance after injecting the fillers. Also sometimes it can cause excessive puffiness in the area.

Chemical peel with low concentration TCA + lactic acid is also a good solution and is non invasive in nature. Glycolic acid in lower strength can be used instead of TCA. Peels give great results also being less expensive than dermal fillers and has almost no complications.

Microneedling to the under eye area to restore its elasticity and tighten up the skin along with mesotherapy of collagen or skin rejuvenating serum has good results also lasting longer than chemical peels.

Ayurveda therapies like Abhyanga (Ayurvedic body massage) for relaxation, Netra Tarpan (Ayurvedic eye care therapy) for strenghtening the eye muscles, Lepa (herbal facial application) to improve the complexion are useful on a long term to get rid of dark cirlces and also to stay away from them.

Most of the cases are treated with a combination of multiple treatments advised in a regime to give better and long lasting results. All the efforts taken by the treating doctor depends on the patient as maintaining the results depends mostly on post treatment care and a good lifestyle.