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News updated at 11:35 AM IST

Help dark circles disappear

Jan 4, 2013, DHNS: 19:59 IST
You have been sleeping for the adequate number of hours at night, also drinking enough fluids. Then why do your under-eyes look black as shadows? Under-eye darkness can be a symptom of latent health problems or a disturbed lifestyle. Metrolife speaks to a few doctors to find out more about this stubborn health problem.

Dr Surendra Chawla, Cosmetic Surgeon and Senior Consultant at Fortis Escorts Hospital, says, “Whenever we get a complaint of under-eye dark circles, we assess the patient for different health issues. For example, he or she may have been smoking or drinking excessively. Smoking causes vascular (blood vessel) problems that make the blood vessels under your eyes appear more prominent and bluer. Alternatively, you could be suffering from allergies related to certain food items or chemicals or Gluten intolerance. All of them lead to dark under-eyes.”

Dr Chawla adds that one should also reduce their salt intake if suffering from under-eye patches. Too much salt impairs blood circulation and causes blood vessels under the skin to appear bluer than usual. This problem is also attributed to lack of Vitamin K or inadequate anti-oxidants. A deficiency in B12 (usually anaemia-related) also results in dark circles.

Certain hereditary problems can also result in this problem, in which case, there is no alternative but to live with it. Dr Karuna Malhotra, homeopath physician at the Cosmetic Skin and Homeo Clinic, informs us, “Some people are found to be suffering from pigmentation irregularities causing under-eye dark circles. Sometimes it runs in families and a daughter, mother and grandmother can all be suffering from this.”

Besides, she adds, age is another factor which you cannot overturn. Ageing causes thinning of the skin and prominence of blood vessels under the eye making them look blue.

So what can one do to contain these ugly symptoms? Dr Karuna says, “Slice a cucumber and place its pieces on the eyes for at least 10 minutes daily. Also, you can use spent tea bags or ice cubes wrapped in soft cloth in a similar manner. Tea bags contain caffeine and anti-oxidants that help repair damaged skin.”

“Besides, raw potatoes also help in reducing dark circles. You can cool a potato in the refrigerator and cut it into thin slices. Apply them 2-3 times a day for around 20 minutes for optimum effect. You can also massage the hollows of your eyes with almond oil just before going to bed to reduce both dark circles and stress.”

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