Melasma is a common skin condition in which patches of skin on the face darken. Typically, the affected areas are the cheeks, bridge of the nose, forehead or upper lip. The dark patches are often symmetrical. Melasma can occur in anyone, but is much more frequently found among women, especially women who are pregnant when it is called chloasma, and is sometimes referred to as the “pregnancy mask.” Although not a painful or dangerous problem, melasma can be very distressing emotionally because of its alteration of the appearance. Melasma is not always a permanent condition. It may disappear in a woman several months after she gives birth, but may reoccur after unprotected exposure to the sun.
If you are in need of treatment for melasma, call our office today to schedule an appointment.
Risk Factors For Melasma
While the precise cause of melasma is unknown, certain individuals have a genetic predisposition to developing this condition and it more frequently occurs in people with brown skin. There is also a clear correlation between female hormones and melasma, since not only are pregnant women more susceptible, but so are women on birth control or hormone replacement therapy. Sun exposure makes the development of melasma more likely, so women in tropical climates are more prone to the condition. Overheating of the skin, such as in saunas, have also been known to worsen melasma.
Diagnosis Of Melasma
Melasma is usually diagnosed through a simple physical examination of the skin. A Wood’s lamp, which uses ultraviolet light, is used to highlight skin discolorations and direct the course of treatment.
Treatment For Melasma
We now use the Qswitch laser to gently reduce melasma without the risk of overheating the skin. Treatment is done over 3-6 treatments about 4-6 weeks apart. The Qswitch uses acoustic sound waves delivered by its nanosecond technology.
Patients with melasma should apply infrared sunscreen or sunblock outdoors since sun exposure will worsen the condition.
Contact us today to schedule an appointment for melasma treatment! We offer Free Virtual and In-Person consultations.
BodiSculpting Specialists proudly serves Bend, Sisters*, Eugene, Roseburg, Florence* and Albany and the surrounding areas of Oregon.
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