How To Avoid And Treat Melasma

August 26, 2010

Melasma is known to be one of the most common skin disorders especially amongst women. You are most likely to experience facial Melasma during prolonged sun exposure. Uneven skin tone on the face is usually a sign of this. Estrogen and Progesterone are female hormones which are believed by physicians to be the main contributors in skin pigmentation. Pregnancy is a common stage in women where they will experience various hormonal imbalances which may result to Melasma.  The pregnancy mask or an imbalance of pigments on the facial tissue will be lived through by most women during pregnancy. Oral contraceptives are also known to cause Melasma. Those that have darker skin types are most common to suffer from it.

It is more common for women to have Melasma than Men. It can occur during the reproductive stage and rarely before puberty.   Facial hyper pigmentation is a normal term for Melasma. Most cases of skin hyper pigmentation is due to unprotected sun exposure. Studies show that the condition may also be inherited from family members.

There are different types of Melasma patterns.   The mildest form of skin pigmentation is known as Epidermal Melasma which involves only the outer skin layer.  A more harsher condition of Melasma is where the pigments are located much deeper than the outer layer which is called Dermal Melasma. There are also cases where a person’s facial condition has both Epidermal and Dermal Melasma.

A dermatologist would be able to prescribe the proper care and medication needed to clear your skin of Melasma.   Applying topical or taking oral medications without any further analysis on your skin’s condition can lead to further skin damage. Your dermatologist will prescribe a treatment solution dependent on the condition you have. Depending on the skin condition, simple treatments from topical medications to more progressive measures like laser treatments may be suggested by your dermatologist. For simple cases of Melasma, a chemical peel using topical medications would be the most common prescription to balance the skin color. Some people may not be able to use chemical peels as they may experience allergic reactions especially those who have sensitive skin conditions. Other treatment options not chemically induced would be the diamond peel or Microdermabrasion.

Melasma usually exhibits itself on the face particularly on the cheek, upper lip and nose areas.   UV protection such as sunscreen lotions and creams help avoid Melasma and skin darkening caused by the sun’s harmful rays. As the face and neck are easily exposed to the sun, applying sun protection like sun block creams and lotions would protect and avoid getting skin pigmentations.  Applying sun block lotions or creams regularly throughout the day will make sure that your skin is fully shielded from the harmful rays of the sun thus avoiding the occurrence of Melasma.

Melasma Further ReadingFurther Reading:

Melasma – What Can I do?

Melasma – Treatment Options

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