What causes melasma?

Word MELASMA composed of wooden letters. Pregnant woman in the background

Melasma is a condition that can impact the coloration of the skin. At the Skin and Laser Surgery Center of New England, we provide the diagnosis and treatment options for patients with melasma. Our team of professionals can help patients understand the causes behind their condition and seek effective solutions.

What causes melasma?

Melasma is typically caused by hormonal changes, such as those that occur during puberty, pregnancy, and even for those who take birth control pills or hormonal supplements. However, other changes in the body can increase one’s risk for melasma, including thyroid disease, increased levels of stress, and even sun exposure. By determining the cause, the doctors of the Skin and Laser Surgery Center of New England can provide solutions.

Treatments for melasma

This condition cannot be cured, per se, but it can be managed and controlled to the extent where the appearance may be reduced. Melasma caused by hormonal changes, such as pregnancy, will often clear up on its own after delivery. Melasma caused by thyroid disease may be more permanent in nature and require routine treatments. Treatment options may include:

  • Changes in hormonal supplements or birth control
  • Prescription hydroquinone creams, over-the-counter or prescription-strength
  • Corticosteroids or tretinoin
  • Topical azelaic acid or kojic acid to lighten dark patches
  • Microdermabrasion
  • Laser and light therapies
  • Chemical peels

Which treatment is right for me?

First and foremost, patients should get a proper diagnosis from their skin care professional. Then, discussion as to the best possible treatment can begin. Treatments vary depending on the severity and cause of melasma, so an appointment with our doctors is key to finding a treatment option that will provide the desired results.

How is melasma diagnosed?

Melasma is easily diagnosed with a physical examination and a discussion of one’s medical history. Patients can visit with a dermatologist to find out if the condition is present, and then work with them in developing a treatment plan that can reduce the appearance of these skin blemishes.

Interested in discussing melasma with a professional?

Call one of our three convenient locations throughout New Hampshire and Massachusetts to learn more with the team at the Skin and Laser Surgery Center of New England.

Posted in: Melasma

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