What Can I Do About My Melasma?
Blotchy pigmentation is a common skin concern that affects many people. You may have heard the terms melasma or chloasma (pregnancy mask). Melasma is a pigment disorder of the skin that commonly affects women, and it can be made worse by sun exposure, heat exposure and hormonal changes.
Every single adult living in Australia will have some degree of pigmentation. A lot of this pigment will be sun damage in the form of freckles and sun spots. For others, this pigment may present as larger blotches on the face, usually in a symmetrical fashion.
Traditional methods of pigment reduction include chemical peels, laser and IPL. With melasma though, there are many factors to consider before starting treatment. If the pigment is deeper in the skin, peels and IPL wont reach it. If the melasma is made worse by heat, then nearly all treatments run the risk of darkening it.
The safest laser to use for melasma and one of the most effective treatment options is a Q-switched laser. This is a very powerful machine that can be modified to successfully improve the appearance of melasma.
Treatment of melasma must include both professional treatments as well as customised homecare. The homecare is designed to reduce the pigment already present, but also reduce your skin’s ability to create more pigment. We have a doctor on site who can write a script for specialty cream if necessary, or we have over-the-counter options. The professional treatments will then work on reducing the visible melasma.
The bottom line is: melasma can be treated but it is a slow and steady road. You will need several treatments accompanied by specialty creams to use at home.
Read about our laser treatment for melasma here.