Facts on Melasma
Melasma, also known as chloasma, is the type of skin pigmentation triggered by estrogen during pregnancy or due to the intake of birth control pill. This kind of skin condition or pigmentation problem is difficult to treat. Melasma may show up in the form of brown and gray patches on the skin of your cheeks, on your upper lips or sandwiched between the eyebrows and eyes. It is essential to know the facts on melasma. If you know everything about melasma, you can treat skin pigmentation condition with ease. It is acquired hypermelanosis on certain areas of the body that are exposed to UV rays of the sun. People who are dark-skinned mainly suffer from this hypermelanosis condition. Even those who are fair-skinned may have this. Both men and women are likely to have it.
How does melasma occur?
Whenever the estrogen hormone triggers pigmentation hormone, it results in dark brown or black patches on the skin. The size of the skin patch due to melasma is uneven. It can also spread all throughout the face and so something needs to be done. And it is not only due to estrogen but also progesterone can stimulate pigmentation hormone to contribute to the appearance of dark and uneven patches on the skin.
It is common among women
- There can be nearly 3-5 kinds of phototype Fitzpatrick.
- It is more common among women.
- Pregnant women are more likely to have melasma
- Those, who are using birth control pills, are more likely to suffer melasma
- If you are taking hormone replacement therapy, uneven patches on the skin will show up
Melasma patches can show up on various regions of the face like forehead, nose or cheeks. The size of the patch suggests the severity of the condition. Melasma refers to facial pigmentation and there are several ways to treat it.
Top 4 causes of melasma
There are various causes of melasma. Before adopting any treatment mode, know the reasons that caused this skin pigmentation condition. Some of the causes are:
- The skin pigmentation condition is light sensitive. Any exposure to the UV rays of the sun can cause this issue
- Hormonal changes can cause melasma and so this is common among women. Women experience hormonal changes much more than men. Besides, women using contraceptive pills or other hormonal tablets before and after menopause can have this
- This condition is also genetic. If the mother is suffering from this skin condition, even the child can suffer later on
- If you are not consuming sufficient amount of zinc and Vitamin D, you may have a pigmentation problem.
There are various ways to prevent melasma
It is better to adopt certain ways to preventing melasma than doing something about it much later. Adopt the following ways to prevent melasma:
- Melasma is direct consequence of an exposure to the harmful UV rays of the sun. So, it is important to use sunscreen lotion on a regular basis to avoid it. If you already have melasma, then also you must use a sunscreen lotion. Sunscreen lotion of 30+ SPF can prevent any spread of the patches or spots. The pigmentation mark will not be deeper and darker in that case. Apply sunscreen lotion on all the exposed regions of the body 20 minutes prior to moving out of your home.
- Do not use hormonal supplement pills if you already have pigmentation problem. Before you use birth control pill, have a look at the condition you are already suffering from. It is good to consult gynecologist who can recommend you a safe alternative to using birth control pill.
- Consume diet which is anti-oxidant laden. Eat a lot of green vegetables and fruits as that can flush out the toxins. Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. Doing so for a prolonged period of time can solve your pigmentation problem.
- If you notice pigmentation marks on the skin, get in touch with a doctor as soon as possible. It may be caused due to some underlying medical condition. There may be a problem in thyroid and so the doctor will prescribe a few tests. An early treatment can help to do away with pigmentation problem
A good quality cream can protect you from pigmentation marks
To safeguard your skin from Melasma, use Melasma cream of popular brand. This must be done immediately when you notice pigmentation marks on the skin. Try to stay away from the rays of the sun as much as possible. Niacinamide is one such cream which can effectively treat melasma. It reduces cutaneous pigmentation that you see on the face. Niacinamide melasma cream is effective treatment because it is rich in Vitamin B3 and is devoid of any harsh chemical. So, there is no fear of damaging the skin. It can give the following benefits:
- It restricts photocarcinogenesis and photoimmunosuppression
- And it removes fine lines, wrinkles and blemishes
- Niacinamide triggers the production of Ceramide to protect the skin from any moisture loss. Moisture loss is the leading cause of wrinkles and fine lines
- It not only removes patches from the skin but also whitens the skin
- Niacinamide melasma skin treatment can make the face softer, whiter, younger and much cleaner
The anti-inflammatory property of niacinamide cream has miraculous effect on the skin. There will be dramatic reduction in the skin patches after the continuous use of melasma skin treatment cream.
The various treatment options for melasma patches
The following are the top 7 melasma treatment options:
- To manage Melasma, apply sunscreen lotion. The use of cream will prevent any spread of pigmentation marks.
- If you are not sure about sunscreen lotion, you may use medicated creams to get rid of melasma marks. Get in touch with a dermatologist to get suitable names of medicated creams. The medicated cream may have the label of skin whitening or skin brightening cream. Have a closer at the content of the cream. Watch out for kojic acid, hydroquinone, AHA, BHA (Beta hydroxyl acid), retinol, tetrahydrocurcumin, licorice and stuffs like mulberry. Check the potential ingredients used for making the skin whitening or melasma treatment cream. More the components, better it is. If the problem is severe, use medicated melasma cream along with other treatment procedures recommended by dermatologist. Doing so will control the extent of pigmentation, reduce darkness and bring about great relief. If your skin does not respond to any particular cream, you must try out another cream. Use the cream which gives better results and for a prolonged period.
- Melasma supplements in tablet form can also clear away the pigmentation marks. Look for the use of tree bark extracts such as proanthocyanidin or anti-inflammatory tranexamic acid. They can treat melasma pigmentation marks. The market is flooded with melasma creams that contain L-cysteine, glutathione, and methionine.
- Chemical peeling is a popular treatment for melasma. There is no need to struggle with melasma when you can choose chemical peeling for melasma. The treatment procedure is easy on the pocket and is gentle. For better results, you may use a combination of medium depth and superficial peels. You can visit the dermatologist office every month for the session. You will require multiple sessions basing on the severity of the problem.
- Microdermabrasion is again an effective treatment for melasma pigmentation marks. It is just like chemical peeling which takes away the dead skin cells from the surface. Microdermabrasion is also perfect for the one who is not fit for chemical peels.
- There are various kinds of lasers available for treating melasma. It depends on the person what suits him. But, it is not that cheap and the results may also be dubious. You will notice a reduction in the pigmentation mark just after the first sitting, but regular sessions will make things unaffordable. The laser treatment is best for pigmented spots and freckles.
- Mesotherapy is again active ingredient which may help to reduce pigmentation mark. The active ingredients to diminish dark patches are injected or may be consumed in tablet and supplement form. The creams are also available that give maximum benefits. For injecting the ingredients, a small needle is used. The discomfort may further be reduced with the use of numbing gel before injecting. But again, multiple sessions will be required for treating it
A combination of treatments can deliver excellent results
When you are in the process of treating melasma, a combination of treatment procedures can deliver great results. This way, the pigmentation mark may be attacked or hit from multiple sides or angles. Use medicated cream, sunscreen lotion, or if necessary choose a cosmetic procedure.
What is a mask of pregnancy?
Melasma or uneven patches on the skin are pretty common during pregnancy. Such patches are known as ‘mask of pregnancy’. Even men can have this problem. So, it is not just restricted to women. Imbalance in hormone is the leading cause of melasma patches.
Interesting facts on Melasma
The following are the noteworthy facts on Melasma:
- Melasma causes blue-gray patches, brown spots on the face. Your face may appear to be tanned. The problem will be more severe if you are exposed to the rays of the sun
- Women aging 20-50 years suffer from Melasma
- The skin condition is characterized by three different location patterns such as the central face, jawline, and cheekbone
- It is caused due to hormonal imbalance, sun’s rays and genetic factors
- Creams using hydroquinone can treat skin pigmentation
- To prevent melasma, you must avoid exposure to sun’s rays, wear sunscreen lotion and put on your hat
The centrofacial pattern is pretty common
When it comes to the form or kind of melasma, the centrofacial pattern is common. It includes regions like cheeks, forehead, nose, chin and upper lip. So, all the central part of your face is likely to get melasma patches. The upper neck is less susceptible to getting melasma patches. However, only rarely it occurs on the arms.
The various types of melasma
Melasma shows up four patterns of pigmentation marks. They are on the dermal layer, epidermal layer, mixed kind and unnamed kind of melasma common among dark-skinned people. If there is excessive melanin in the superficial layer of the skin, it is called epidermal type melasma. On the other hand, dermal melasma is characterized by melanophages that ingest melanin all across the dermis. As the name suggests, the mixed kind includes dermal and epidermal type. People with dark skin have excessive melanocytes.
The ways to diagnose it
If you suspect melasma, you must see a dermatologist. The healthcare professional will adopt ways to diagnosing the exact condition. Get in touch with skin specialist who specializes in diagnosing and treating melasma. Just by examining the skin surface virtually, the dermatologist will be able to find out the skin disorder. Mixed melasma is pretty common which involves discoloration in the dermis and epidermis level. The skin expert may suggest skin biopsy to find if another medical condition is leading to melasma.
Which is the best treatment for melasma?
Wondering what the best treatment for melasma is? A melasma cream with 2% hydroquinone along with medications like NeoCutis Blanche, Obagi Clear is the best treatment. Watch the concentration of hydroquinone. If the problem is severe, choose the one with 4% hydroquinone. But, a product with more than 2% hydroquinone will need a prescription. Just apply the cream on the brown patches twice daily to lighten the skin. Regular usage can give you excellent results. After using the medicated cream, you should apply sunscreen lotion for sure. Treatment for melasma varies as per the type and kind. It also differs from person to person. Some people respond better to the specific product while others do not.
Melasma skin marks may also vanish without any medical intervention. A change of diet, lifestyle, and use of sunscreen lotion can bring about noticeable changes. But, if you want quick results, choose specially formulated skin creams.