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What is Melasma?



โ•AKA. โ€˜chloasmaโ€™, Melasma is a common skin condition, where brown or greyish patches of pigmentation (colour) develop, usually on the face.


They most commonly appear as small light or dark-brown coloured spots, that are flat and without any other symptoms with them.


๐™’๐™๐™ค ๐™œ๐™š๐™ฉ๐™จ ๐™ˆ๐™š๐™ก๐™–๐™จ๐™ข๐™–?


๐ŸคฐIt is more common in women, especially during pregnancy and often starts between 20 to 40 years old.


Melasma is more common in people of colour and those who tan very quickly but can occur to people of all skin types.


๐™’๐™๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™˜๐™–๐™ช๐™จ๐™š๐™จ ๐™ž๐™ฉ?


๐Ÿ‘ฉโ€๐Ÿ”ฌThe exact cause of melasma appears complex, but simply put, it is caused by the overproduction of skin pigment (melanin) by the pigment-producing cells (melanocytes). These are then taken up by skin cells (keratinocytes) or deposited deeper in our skin.


๐”ฝ๐•’๐•”๐•ฅ๐• ๐•ฃ๐•ค ๐•š๐•Ÿ๐•ง๐• ๐•๐•ง๐•–๐•• ๐•š๐•Ÿ ๐•„๐•–๐•๐•’๐•ค๐•ž๐•’:


๐ŸงฌGenes: patients often report affected family members


โ˜€๏ธSun exposure: Visible and UV light promote the development of pigmentation


๐Ÿ’ŠHormones: 1 in 4 cases of Melasma are in either pregnant patients or those on hormone based contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy


๐Ÿ›€Medications: Certain medications or toiletries can cause a skin reaction to trigger melasma


๐™ƒ๐™ค๐™ฌ ๐™˜๐™–๐™ฃ ๐™ˆ๐™š๐™ก๐™–๐™จ๐™ข๐™– ๐™—๐™š ๐™™๐™ž๐™–๐™œ๐™ฃ๐™ค๐™จ๐™š๐™™?


๐Ÿ‘ฉโ€โš•๏ธMelasma can often be diagnosed on clinical appearance and a Wood lamp or dermatoscope can help to confirm this.


๐ŸฅผOther conditions can often be mistaken for melasma, including post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, drug-induced hyperpigmentation and solar lentigos.


๐™’๐™๐™–๐™ฉ ๐™ž๐™จ ๐™ฉ๐™๐™š ๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™š๐™–๐™ฉ๐™ข๐™š๐™ฃ๐™ฉ ๐™›๐™ค๐™ง ๐™ˆ๐™š๐™ก๐™–๐™จ๐™ข๐™–?


๐Ÿ˜ŽLife-long, regimented sun protection


๐ŸงดTopical treatments can help, you may need a prescription for these


๐Ÿง–Chemical peels and lasers can help but must be used with caution in the hands of an experienced practitioner, otherwise they run the risk of worsening the condition


โฐMelasma can be difficult to treat, and it can take time to respond to treatment.


๐‡๐š๐ฏ๐ž ๐ฆ๐จ๐ซ๐ž ๐ช๐ฎ๐ž๐ฌ๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐ฌ ๐จ๐ง ๐ฆ๐ž๐ฅ๐š๐ฌ๐ฆ๐š, ๐จ๐ซ ๐š๐ง๐จ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ ๐ฌ๐ค๐ข๐ง ๐œ๐จ๐ง๐๐ข๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง?


Email me your questions at drharmonyaesthetics@gmail.com


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