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Excess melanin production in skin cells produces a condition that appears as dark, blotchy spots on the face. This condition is called Melasma and occur most often in women. The spots are darker and larger than age-spots or freckles, for which it is sometimes mistaken. Scientists state several factors contribute to Melasma including estrogen levels and sun damage. Treatments are available, but are expensive and not guaranteed to work. Many women have also been helped with Melasma treatment over the counter creams.
This condition, as many others, including acne, rosacea and eczema affects not only a person’s appearance, but also her self-confidence. For this reason, many people try every and any treatment option they can find. Men also suffer from melasma, although not in as high numbers as women, especially since it is very common in pregnant women. The condition is universal, but seen more in people with darker skin tones. Fair skinned people may have the condition but it is not as visible unless they get a tan, and then will notice the discoloration.
Treatment Options for Melasma
No magic formula or cure is available at this time for melasma, although there are products and treatments to improve the skin’s appearance. First and foremost, however, anyone suffering from the condition should protect his or her skin from the sun, which is expert advice for everyone. Use a sunblock of at least 15 spf–meaning it must be applied every four hours.
Chemical peels are an effective melasma treatment and in general remove increased melanin levels in the skin with acids such as lactic and fruit extracts, glycolic, azelaic and trichloroacetic. A higher rate of success is attained by using stronger chemicals. This produces extreme exfoliation–the skin peels off within days of the treatment.
Up to six treatments may be necessary, which means it is also inconvenient and expensive.
For those who try chemical peels and are not satisfied with the result, there are laser skin rejuvenation treatments as a last resort. One of several kinds of laser may be used, and all have advanced and improved significantly over the years. The three main techniques are Fraxel dual laser technology, Q-switched laser and Intense Pulsed Light. Although effective, laser also involves frequent treatments and topical medication.
Melasma Treatment Over the Counter
The skin discoloration of melasma can be treated with several good over the counter skin whitening creams These should be used in combination with a good skin care regimen, as a first line of defense.
Melasma treatment over the counter creams can be found at local pharmacies or a brief internet search will reveal many possibilities with full descriptions of ingredients and usage. Skin whitening creams with all natural ingredients are also available in health food stores. Look for creams with ingredients such as kojic acid, fruit extracts, licorice and arbutin. These suggestions are meant for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Consult a licensed physician or dermatologist for an assessment of any medical concerns.
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