Melasma is a common skin condition that affects people of all ages. It changes the tone and coloring of areas of skin on different areas of the body. While it is harmless, it can affect the confidence of those that have it. If you yourself have melasma and want to learn more about what causes it and how it can be treated, then keep reading.
How Does Melasma Present?
Melasma can present in a number of different ways, from darkened patches of skin or discoloration such as greying or lightening of the skin. It can be especially prevalent in those of older age or in pregnant women which is known as ‘pregnancy mask’. It most commonly appears on the face but can also appear anywhere on the body. It is generally more common in people of color or those with skin that naturally darkens in the sun.
What Causes Melasma?
There are a range of causes when it comes to why melasma develops. Some of the most common reasons include sun and UV ray exposure, pregnancy, hormonal changes, genetic predispositions, or aging skin. It’s also sometimes thought to develop due to effects to hormone changes such as hormone replacement therapy or starting hormonal birth control such as the pill. Having a family history of melasma can make it more likely that you may develop it yourself, although it doesn’t guarantee it.
Can Melasma Be Completely Cured?
Unfortunately, melasma cannot be completely cured, however, the appearance of melasma can be improved and lightened to make it less obvious. It is also possible that melasma can begin clearing on its own spontaneously. Generally though, it is unlikely that melasma can be completely cured and eradicated, but there are treatments available to improve its appearance.
What Options Are There For Melasma Treatment?
So, which treatments are available for treating melasma ? There are a number of products available on the market that can help with improving the appearance of melasma. They generally involve lightening the affected pigmented area of skin and improving skin texture and tone. Some treatments available at beauty salons can also be used to treat melasma. Treatments such as skin peels, micro-needling, and laser therapy can be used to help improve the appearance of melasma patches.
Is Melasma A Sign Of Cancer?
Melasma is not a sign of cancer and does not provide any danger to those that have it, although it can, of course, be worrying when it appears. Skin cancers (melanomas) present differently to melasma. Melanomas typically tend to appear quickly, with redness or mixed colours, ragged edges, raised borders, and can cause pain, itching, and irritation. Melasma on the other hand, does not cause any pain or discomfort, and only affects the pigment of the skin. However, if you have concerns about changes to your skin it is always best to seek medical advice from a qualified dermatologist who can take a closer look at the affected skin and carry out tests if necessary.