What You Need To Know About Melasma

May 18, 2010

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Melasma is known to be one of the most common skin disorders especially amongst women. It usually appears on the areas of the face which are regularly exposed to the sun. Melasma is a dark skin discoloration usually seen as pigment patches on the face. Most experts believe that this kind of skin condition is related to female hormones such as Estrogen and Progesterone. During pregnancy, it would be common for some women to have darker skin patches or discoloration due to the rise of various hormones.   Melasma is commonly cited as the pregnancy mask where women experience darker skin patches during pregnancy. Oral contraceptives are also known to cause Melasma. Melasma is also experienced more by those who have darker skin types.

It is more common for women to have Melasma than Men. Most will experience Melasma during the reproductive period.  Melasma is also known in certain cases as facial hyper pigmentation. Most cases of skin hyper discoloration is due to unprotected sun exposure. A history of Melasma conditions among family members can also contribute to a person acquiring it.

There are different types of Melasma patterns.   Pigmentation on the outer layer of the skin is the mildest form of Melasma which is classified as Epidermal.   Dermal Melasma is the condition where the skin pigmentation is deeper and would be harder to treat. Certain situations may even have both Epidermal and Dermal Melasma present on several areas of the face.

For those who want to get rid of Melasma and other unsightly skin pigmentations, it would be best to consult a dermatologist.    Applying topical or taking oral medications without any further analysis on your skin’s condition can lead to further skin damage. There will be a set of medications a dermatologist may recommend to help clear out Melasma. Topical medications like creams and liquid peeling agents may be prescribed for simple cases of Melasma while others may need to undergo more advanced treatments like laser. The most common remedy would be the chemical peel process. 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.   To prevent Melasma from worsening, it would be advisable to use sun protection like sunscreen lotions. Apply sunscreen protection regularly throughout the face and even the neck and nape.   Further protect your skin by applying sunscreen every 2 hours or so.

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