Also called cholasma, melasma is a chronic skin condition in which dark uneven patches appear on the face specially over the cheek. Melasma is more common with women and seems to appear more often during pregnancy. Other factors that are thought to be triggers are overexposure to the sun, heredity and hormones.
There are several methods that effectively treat melasma, including topical prescription medications, laser and light treatments and chemical peels. It is common to use a combination of treatments to achieve the best results.
Melasma is a difficult skin condition to treat as it can reappear at any point. Laser therapy is the most effective method to diminish and eliminate the dark patches associated with melasma. Using a handheld laser device, light energy is directed at the targeted areas and absorbed by the skin. The light energy breaks up the pigment, diminishing and even erasing the appearance of melasma.
Each patient’s laser treatment is customized based on factors including skin tone and the extent of the condition. Each treatment typically takes about an hour and is not painful.
Treating melasma requires great care in the approach, as too much treatment may exacerbate the condition. Laser treatments typically result in mild redness and tingling that takes a few days to subside. It is important to keep the skin clean and moisturized with a quality skin care regimen. Additionally, because it can return, melasma is more about prevention than treatment. It is important to avoid direct sun exposure to the face along with using a daily moisturizer with SPF 50.
If you have dark patches on your face that do not seem to disappear over time, you may be a good candidate for melasma treatments.
Dr Nandini Baruah, a cosmetic dermatologist holds vast experience in her field. She has undergone extensive training in various reputed institutes throughout the country. She is a trained professional who routinely performs a number of high volume cosmetic procedures like fillers, botox, thread lifts, PRPs and various other dermatosurgical procedures. She specializes in aesthetic medicine and facial rejuvenation surgeries.