If you’re living with the discoloration and dark spots of melasma, then you know just how frustrating it can become. Here at Vibrant Dermatology, we can help you regain your natural skin tone and confidence with professional melasma treatments that can help reduce the severity and discoloration caused by melasma.
Research has shown that those who suffer from melasma have an increased activity within the melanocyte cells that give your skin its color. Thankfully, there are several treatments available that can help greatly reduce or completely reverse the signs of melasma.
At Vibrant Dermatology, we’re committed to helping you keep comfortable and confident within your skin. When it comes to treating melasma, our professional team can help guide you to the treatment option that works best for you. Helping you get back to your daily life without the worry of blotchy, discolored, or dark skin spots.
What is Melasma?
When your melanocyte cells are overly active, it can cause discoloration on the surface of your skin. This condition is known as melasma. While it may be unsightly and unpleasant, melasma poses no risk to your health and continues to be studied by medical professionals who are working hard at uncovering the root cause of this skin condition.
Melasma typically occurs around the areas of your face, leaving you with dark spots or blotches of skin that appear discolored and out of place. Common places where melasma has been seen include:
- On your cheeks
- Your chin
- Your forehead
- On your Nose
- Above your upper lip
What Causes Melasma?
The causes of melasma aren’t fully understood yet, however, it’s believed that when something occurs that triggers your skin cells to go into overdrive is when melasma happens. Common triggers may include things such as certain medications, stress, excessive UV rays such as sunlight or tanning beds, and pregnancy.
Certain medications have been found to increase your chances for melasma, these medications typically affect your hormones in some way or another. These medications include things such as:
- Anti-seizure medications
- Birth control pills
- Any medications that make your skin more sensitive to sunlight
With an increase in hormones and estrogen being released into your body during pregnancy, you’re likely to see many different changes happen that can also include melasma. These hormones are thought to trigger your body’s skin cells causing them to overwork themselves and become melasma.
Sunlight and Tanning Beds
When you think of tanning whether with a tanning bed or out in the natural sunlight, you probably picture that beautiful bronze tone of a natural tan. However, the sunlight and UV rays produced by tanning beds and the sun can cause your body to produce more pigment within your skin. While oftentimes this tan is even or consistent, sometimes it can become blotchy or uneven leaving you with melasma.
Responsible for making hormones that help your body with several important functions such as breaking down food and regulating your heartbeat, your thyroid gland can experience issues. If you suffer from a thyroid disease as well as melasma, it has been found that sometimes treating the thyroid issue also helps clear up the effects of melasma.
Who’s at Risk of Developing Melasma?
In studies, it’s been found that certain people may have a higher risk of developing melasma. While the triggering causes are still being researched, it’s believed that you have a higher risk if you fall within any of the following categories.
- You are a woman between 20 and 40 years old
- If you have a medium or darker skin tone
- If you have any relatives who have had melasma before
How To Get Rid of Melasma
Depending on the severity and triggering cause, some melasma may clear up on its own. When you give birth or quit certain medications, the symptoms of melasma may ease and fade afterward. However, this isn’t always the case and when you find yourself still needing professional help clearing up your melasma, our team at Vibrant Dermatology can help.
Regardless of which medication your dermatologist prescribes for your melasma, it’s always recommended that you protect your skin from things such as UV rays. To do this, apply your melasma medication followed by sunscreen, and then finish up with the makeup of your choice.
Hydroquinone Creams and Gels
Requiring a prescription, products that contain hydroquinone such as many creams and gels can help treat melasma and are commonly prescribed for the condition. Applied topically to your skin, these creams and gels help even out your skin tone and can reduce the effects of melasma.
Triple Combination Cream
Containing three different medications, triple combination creams typically contain tretinoin (a retinoid), a corticosteroid to reduce inflammation, and hydroquinone which helps to even out your skin tone. Making it an extremely effective tool when you struggle with the blotchy dark spots that melasma creates.
Tretinoin With a Mild Corticosteroid
A good in-between option when it comes to topical treatments is tretinoin in combination with a mild corticosteroid. This helps to reduce inflammation while also working to even out your skin tone.
Other Dermatologist Recommended Medications
Sometimes your dermatologist may prescribe or recommend a different approach when it comes to treating your melasma. Some of the more common options that your dermatologist might recommend for you that may be gentler on your skin include:
- Azelaic acid
- Kojic acid
- Vitamin C
At Vibrant Dermatology, We’re Your Melasma Treatment Experts
Whether you live within the Westwood area or not, our dermatologists at Vibrant Dermatology are here to help you understand your melasma so that you can make the best choice when it comes to selecting a treatment option that’s right for you.