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Melasma Treatment, Prevention and Information

By Annabelle Roylance

What is Melasma?

Melasma (or chloasma) is a very common skin condition characterized by the formation of dark spots around the face. These brown patches of hyperpigmentation typically develop on the cheekbones, forehead and upper lip. It can also occur on the nose, chin, lower cheeks and the sides of the neck. These spots are usually irregular in shape, but have defined edges. They often occur symmetrically on both sides of the face.

Melasma Causes

As Melasma is often associated with the female hormones estrogen and progesterone, it is most common in young women taking birth control pills or who are pregnant. This has led to the popular thought that Melasma is caused by the stimulation of melanocytes, or pigment producing cells, by these hormones resulting in more melanin production when the skin is exposed to the sun.

Hormonal imbalance and menopause may also lead to its development. The medication Dilantin has also been shown to trigger melasma. People with a light brown skin type from regions with intense sun exposure are much more prone to develop melasma. But the fact is that it can occur without any of those factors and is even seen occasionally in men.

Treatment of Melasma

Melasma is completely harmless and not painful, but dark patches on the face can be emotionally distressing. It can greatly diminish your self esteem and self confidence. For this reason women often search for a melasma treatment that really works.

Effective melasma prevention starts with proper sun protection or avoidance as sun exposure appears to be the stimulating factor in those who are predisposed.

There are some very good skin lightening products which can me used to effectively treat melasma. These creams include Meladerm PIgment Reducing Complex by Civant Skincare and Revitol Skin Brightener. Other melasma treatments include chemical peels and laser surgery.

By far the most important factor in the development and treatment of melasma is exposure to sunlight. For a specific melasma cure to have the best chance of being successful sunlight should be strictly avoided.

In most cases melasma is not permanent. For example when the mask of pregnancy develops during pregnancy it generally clears up after delivery. When it occurs in non pregnant women, it may last for a few months to a few years and then suddenly go away, so treatment is not always necessary unless you want to speed things along.

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Annabelle Roylance is the editor of Best SkinCare Products.
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