You want your skin (the skin of your face) look as perfect and smooth as that of the models in magazines, but for a while you have sprouted brown spots (brown) on the forehead, and especially in cheeks that get worse when you are exposed to the sun. One of your friends also has them, but sprang up during pregnancy and now I know what to do to eliminate them. Do not despair. This condition called melasma (in pregnant women is called chloasma), can be improved with proper skin treatment. But to begin with, both must be protected very well from the sun.
The skin is often a reflection of our habits, or certain circumstances in our lives. For example, melasma, which is the appearance of spots or areas of hyper pigmentation on the face, is a common skin disorder, affecting mostly young women and more often to tan leather. Men can have it too but is only 10% of cases. Let’s see what this condition and how it is presented.
Melasma is a hyper pigmentation of the skin, a dark brown or grayish gives no other symptoms (no pain, no itching, for example), but can be very annoying and aesthetic level that affects the face. What produces it? The main causes include:
* Sun exposure, usually without protection, so it is more common in tropical climates.
* Hormonal changes, such as fluctuating levels of female hormones, estrogen and progesterone. Therefore it is very common during pregnancy (it is so common that they call the “mask of pregnancy or the mark”). When it appears during pregnancy called chloasma.
* Also occurs in some women taking birth control pills or that receiving hormone replacement therapy during menopause.
* It also causes the use of products that irritate the skin and / or stimulate the production of melanin (the pigment that gives color to the skin and is responsible for tanning).
People with a genetic predisposition or family history of melasma are more likely to suffer from this condition.
When you see one of these patterns adopted:
* Centrofacial: in the center of the face. It is the most common and includes the forehead, cheeks, upper lips, nose and chin.
* Malar: the most protuberant (prominent) of the cheeks
* Mandibular bone in the contour of the jaw
There are also four types of pigmentation associated with melasma:
* Epidermal: characterized by excess melanin in the superficial layers of the skin (epidermis).
* Dermal: This type is recognized by the presence of melanophages (cells that eat melanin) in the dermis, which is the layer of skin that lies beneath the surface layers.
* Mixed: which includes a mixture of the two?
* A fourth, unclassified, which is characterized by an excess of melanocytes in dark-skinned people.
The diagnosis and treatment
The dermatologist (or the physician who is the skin specialist) will evaluate the skin of your face to determine the depth of melasma in your particular case. To use a lamp that is known as Wood’s lamp. If it is necessary to rule out any condition on your skin, and considers it necessary, may take a biopsy (a small piece of skin under local anesthesia) to send to the lab for analysis under the microscope. The evaluation of the lamp and / or biopsy results (if necessary) will determine the appropriate treatment.
Sometimes melasma may disappear by itself if it triggered something like a hormonal elevation, such as pregnancy, or birth control pills. If you discontinue the pills, for example, or the end of pregnancy, melasma can be faded with time. But almost always need extra help. The most common forms of treatment of melasma include:
The most important, where possible, is to avoid sun exposure and always wear a sunscreen and / or hats and caps when you’re outdoors. Use a protective cream with SPF (sun protection factor) of 30 or more that you should apply daily, ideally 20 minutes before leaving home.
Whatever the treatment chosen, and while it lasts, you should avoid sun exposure. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should postpone treatment to avoid risks associated with the development of the fetus or newborn. In such cases it is necessary to turn to the foundation and the cosmetic correction to match the skin until you can use an effective treatment.
With discipline in the treatment and avoiding sun exposure have the best chance of the skin of your face returns to its original color. Finally, remember that this condition is a medical problem, is a cosmetic issue, though some call liver spots or liver. Take care of your skin with care so you can give all your best face.