The skin is your body’s most extensive organ, and it shields the delicate internal organs from harm. Unfortunately, several triggers might damage your skin, leaving you with ugly patches. The sun’s rays that nourish your body also cause conditions like melasma. You will most likely get the skin disorder when your melanocytes (color-making cells) malfunction, forcing them to produce more than enough color. As a result, you are at risk of developing melasma if you have darker skin. Could you be suffering from melasma in Glen Allen? If so, contact the skin professionals at Absolute Dermatology & Skin Cancer Center.
What are the common causes of melasma?
Melasma, also loosely referred to as the ‘mark of pregnancy,’ is a common skin disorder that mainly affects pregnant women. Women are more likely to be affected and it happens especially when you are in your reproductive years. Apart from hormonal changes during pregnancy, the skin condition’s other potential triggers include:
- Hormone treatment and taking oral birth control pills
- Sun’s exposure
- Harmful skincare products
What are the symptoms you will likely have when you have melasma?
The most common symptom you will have with melasma is discolored patches on your skin’s surface. Though the skin condition does not have several other symptoms and does not have any physical harm to your body, you could find the patches bothersome. Melasma mostly affects parts of your body exposed to the sun. These parts include your:
- Nose’s bridge
Though rare, you could also have discoloration on other parts like your shoulders, neck, and forearms.
What are your treatment options when you have this skin disorder?
Your doctor may less likely recommend treatment for melasma as the skin condition will disappear without medical interventions if it resulted from pregnancy and contraception pills. For instance, the discoloration will disappear after delivery if you had them because of pregnancy. Melasma can last for a long time, even a lifetime, if you fail to contact your doctor for medical assistance. The treatment options your doctor will recommend to fade or remove the patches include:
Medications. There are various options your doctor will advise you to use, most of which are either in lotion, gel, or cream forms. Hydroquinone is usually the first option your doctor will suggest. The medication works by lightening your skin on the treatment areas. Other possible options include corticosteroids and tretinoin.
Medical procedures. In cases where topical medications fail to be effective, your doctor could recommend procedures like:
- Laser treatment
- Light therapy
- Chemical peels
Unfortunately, the patches may fail to fade despite several attempts to clear them. If this happens, your doctor could suggest ways to ensure the condition does not worsen, thus minimizing the discoloration’s appearance. Ensure to have protective clothing, especially if you will be spending long hours exposed to the sun.
Skin discolorations are not patches you will find comfortable having on various parts of your face. Though you are less likely to have physical harm with melasma, you might find the patches uncalled-for. Contact the skin experts today and learn more about melasma.