Loosely translated, the word means “black spot.” If you have melasma you’re probably experiencing light brown, dark brown and/or blue-gray patches on your skin. 15% to 50% of pregnant women get it. There are three types of melasma and they have to do with the depth of the pigment. Girls develop breasts and start their periods. Before melasma, I used to get Flaxsel laser with incredible results. Passeron T, Picardo M. Melasma, a photoaging disorder. Your skin is made up of three layers. Michelle Kerns writes for a variety of print and online publications and specializes in literature and science topics. Melasma causes symmetrical splotches of dark brown, gray, bluish, black or tan pigmented skin to develop anywhere that the skin receives a lot of exposure to the sun, especially the cheeks, chin, forehead, nose, neck and arms.cause: There are no other systemic symptoms associated with melasma. This article looks at what causes Melasma and how you can reduce the appearance of dark patches on your skin. The three types are: Melasma is not cancerous, a sign of cancer, or a skin condition that “turns into” cancer. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. Melasma usually fades after a few months. Facial hyperpigmentation: causes and treatment. An Bras Dermatol. Melasma is common in pregnant women. At this time, your ovaries have begun to make the hormone estrogen. U.S. National Library of Medicine. Kerns studied English literature and neurology at UC Davis. Melasma is a very common skin disorder, especially among pregnant women. In fact, truth be told, winter time is exactly when you should be upping your melasma treatment. It’s often called the “mask of pregnancy.” Melasma happens because of overproduction of the cells that make the color of your skin. The prevalence of melasma and its association with quality of life in adult male Latino migrant workers. 2. // Leaf Group Lifestyle, Achar A, Rathi SK. Although this disorder is completely harmless, it understandably makes some people feel self-conscious. The condition is more common in women with darker skin phototypes (including those of Hispanic and Asian descent). In: StatPearls. The condition causes dark, discolored patches on your skin. Between 1.5% and 33% of the population may get melasma and it happens more often during a woman’s reproductive years, and rarely happens during puberty. 2015;28(6):648-660. doi:10.1111/pcmr.12404. Melasma (also known as chloasma faciei,: 854 or the mask of pregnancy when present in pregnant women) is a tan or dark skin discoloration.Melasma is thought to be caused by sun exposure, genetic predisposition, hormone changes, and skin irritation. Although we tend to believe that melasma is more prevalent during the summer months symptoms are known to persist during the cold months too. Although melasma is purely a superficial skin condition--it is not related in any way to cancer or any other serious health problem--it can be difficult for affected individuals to deal with the uneven and patchy coloring of their skin. Melanocytes and their diseases. Dermatol Ther. While most of these causes do not generally result in children developing mela… A Wood's lamp is a special ultraviolet light used in a dark room that is capable of illuminating portions of skin that have changed color, even when those pigmentation changes are invisible to the eye. Am Fam Physician. Keeping the face and body clean can help, but if acne is a concern, talk to a doctor. You may also experience more intense emotions during puberty. Puberty is considered "delayed" when there are still no signs of sexual growth or development by the time a boy reaches age 14. 2018;43(1):36-41. doi:10.1111/ced.13234, Lee A-Y. Cold Spring Harb Perspect Med. If you’ve ever noticed brown or grey-brown patches on your skin, then you may have melasma. Plensdorf S, Livieratos M, Dada N. Pigmentation Disorders: Diagnosis and Management. My melasma came on during menopause. A Wood’s lamp that emits black light may be used to determine the depth of the pigment. If hormonal changes, such as those that occur during pregnancy or while taking birth control pills, have caused melasma, it will fade after delivery or once a person stops taking the pills. Our expert physicians and surgeons provide a full range of dermatologic, reconstructive and aesthetic treatments options at Cleveland Clinic. According to the Mayo Clinic, you should use a daily sunscreen with UVA and UVB protection that also features an SPF of more than 30, even when you are mainly within a building and not in direct sunlight. Pigment Cell Melanoma Res. The brain undergoes extensive structural changes during adolescence, concurrent to puberty-related physical and hormonal changes. It’s an organ – the largest organ – and it makes up about one-seventh of your body weight. 2014;89(1):11-25. doi:10.1590/abd1806-4841.20142353, Yamaguchi Y, Hearing VJ. Melasma typically darkens and lightens over time, often getting worse in the summer and better in the winter. Wear protective hats and clothing that covers your limbs as much as possible. However, to keep your skin healthy in general, try a skin-healthy diet of foods rich in Vitamin D: Those with melasma are more likely to have a thyroid disease. Skin-lightening agents, particularly hydroquinone 2-4%. Melasma should not hurt and is only another side effect of heightened hormone production in your body. This form of facial pigmentation was previously called chloasma, but as this derives from the Greek meaning ‘to become green’, the term melasma (brown skin) is preferred. While animal research suggests these biological processes are related to one another, our knowledge of brain development in … Common pigmentation disorders. Your epidermis contains cells called melanocytes that store and produce a dark color (pigment) known as melanin. Other people may have melasma for just a short time, such as during pregnancy. Cure melasma with these treatments. Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care. It causes brown to gray-brown patches on the forehead, upper cheeks, nose, upper lip, and sometimes neck and forearms. You may first notice darkening nipples during puberty. Get useful, helpful and relevant health + wellness information. It can take several decades for this damage to manifest itself as melasma. Am Fam Physician. 2014;4(2):165-186. doi:10.1007/s13555-014-0064-z, Grimes PE, Ijaz S, Nashawati R, Kwak D. New oral and topical approaches for the treatment of melasma. Between 50 to 70 percent of women experience melasma during pregnancy. Copyright © 2021 Leaf Group Ltd., all rights reserved. Melasma: a clinico-epidemiological study of 312 cases. Br J Dermatol. Melasma: Skin darkening during pregnancy – also known as the mask of pregnancy Women of reproductive ages are vulnerable to patchy brown skin discolorations often noticed during pregnancy. Melasma is a common skin condition. Pregnant women get melasma more often than anyone else. It is rare after menopause. condition in which areas of the skin become darker than the surrounding skin Why do we have to go through these changes? It is a brown pigment which appears in the area of the face, forehead, upper cheeks and upper lip, it can also appear on other parts of the body that get lots of sun. Int J Womens Dermatol. Melasma is more common in people of colour and those who tan very quickly but can occur to anyone. CORONAVIRUS: DELAYS FOR ROUTINE SURGERIES, VISITOR RESTRICTIONS + COVID-19 TESTING. The difference in prevalence may be attributed to an individual’s degree of sun exposure, geographic location, and genetics. 9500 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44195 |. However, the American Academy of Dermatology reports that many doctors will conduct a small skin biopsy to test the skin's epithelial cells and confirm that the discoloration is due to melasma. This flood of hormones causes the changes you notice during puberty. 2013;14(5):359-376. doi:10.1007/s40257-013-0038-4. Your healthcare provider may test your thyroid. Melasma is an acquired disorder of hyperpigmentation typically affecting sun-exposed areas of the face. While the exact cause of melasma in pregnant women is unknown, it’s thought to be triggered by the surge of hormones in the body that are present during pregnancy. As a parent, there are a number of preventative measures you can take to help decrease the chance of your child developing melasma as he gets older. Shankar K, Godse K, Aurangabadkar S, et al. Finding the best sunscreen for melasma and wearing clothes and hats that block the UV rays of the sun is important if you plan on being outside a lot during the summer time. While most of these causes do not generally result in children developing melasma, their effects can, over time, accumulate to make children more susceptible later in life. Basit H, Godse KV, Al Aboud AM. doi:10.1101/cshperspect.a017046, Ogbechie-Godec OA, Elbuluk N. Melasma: an Up-to-Date Comprehensive Review. 2014;89(5):771-782. doi:10.1590/abd1806-4841.20143063. 2017;7(3):305-318. doi:10.1007/s13555-017-0194-1. 2018;11(2):53-59. Causes Genetics: Why this skin disorders occurs is unknown, but there is a strong family history in most sufferers. particularly during pregnancy (when up to 50% of women may be affected). There have been concerns regarding potential carcinogenicity in animal studies. Between the ages of 20 to 50, a woman can develop brown, tan or … Melasma is most often diagnosed through a dermatological examination. Melasma is harmless. 1st ed. 2009;79(2):109-116. "Hormones stimulate the production of melanocytes, the cells responsible for producing pigment, and natural light stimulates them to produce excessive pigment," she explains. It most often manifests itself as darkened patches of skin around your lips and on your cheeks and forehead (8). Any dark splotches you developed during pregnancy usually fade within a few months of delivery. Nothing, but nothing is working. When we are growing up, don't we go through various mental, emotional and psychological changes? 2003 Oct;1(1): e27. It inhibits conversion of dopa to melanin. Dermanetwork.org notes that these treatments can include chemical peels, laser resurfacing, bleaching creams and intense pulsed light therapy, a type of treatment that uses strong broadband light to decrease skin discoloration 1. Policy, Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. It’s also called chloasma, or the “mask of pregnancy,” when it occurs in pregnant women. Vashi NA, Kundu RV. Melasma can appear on the forehead, cheeks, nose, and chin and above upper lips and other body parts like forearms and neck. Int J Dermatol. It sometimes affects your arms, neck and back. This hormonal change leads to … Accessed 7/23/20. Eighty percent of people who develop melasma are adult women, with the highest risk among women with dark skin tones; however, it is possible for children to develop melasma. Accessed 7/23/2020. Sometimes the patches can become red or inflamed. The physical changes during puberty for males that occur are different in a number of ways. You may start to feel more mature and ready to make decisions for yourself. Ali, S, Bali S, P S. Hormonal evaluation in females having melasma. 2015;27(5):626-629. doi:10.5021/ad.2015.27.5.626. We have a wealth of expertise in treating brown spot (Melasma) and … According to the Mayo Clinic and the American Academy of Dermatology, melasma has four main causes: excessive exposure to the ultraviolet rays in sunlight; a high circulating blood concentration of the hormones estrogen and progesterone; the inheritance of a predisposition for the disorder; and a skin-care product that irritates the skin and results in an excessive production of melanocytes, the skin's pigment-producing cells. Sarkar R, Ailawadi P, Garg S. Melasma in Men: A Review of Clinical, Etiological, and Management Issues. Between 1.5% and 33% of the population may get melasma and it happens more often during a woman’s reproductive years, and rarely happens during puberty. Commonly affected areas include your face, including the cheeks, upper lip and forehead, as well as the forearms. Possible Involvement of Keratinocyte Growth Factor in the Persistence of Hyperpigmentation in both Human Facial Solar Lentigines and Melasma. The bleaching 8 hour mask is showing the slightest promise so I’m gonna stick with the mask for a minute. Melasma usually becomes more noticeable in the summer and improves during … It … Pichardo R, Vallejos Q, Feldman SR, et al. 2018;31(4):461-465. doi:10.1111/pcmr.12684, Rivas S, Pandya AG. Melasma usually becomes more noticeable in the summer and improves during the winter months.It is not an infection; therefore, it is not contagious, and it is not due to an allergy. To confirm the correct diagnosis an organ – the largest organ – the largest organ – and it up! You ’ ve ever noticed brown or grey-brown patches on the forehead, cheeks, nose, upper and! Achar a, Rathi SK Clinic products or services melasma should not hurt and is a very common skin,... Keep up to 50 % of those who tan well if acne is a type of hyperpigmentation is! 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