Melasma is a common skin problem. The condition causes dark, discolored patches on your skin.
It’s also called chloasma, or the “mask of pregnancy,” when it occurs in pregnant women. The condition is much more common in women than men, though men can get it too.
What You Need To Know?
Melasma causes patches of discoloration. The patches are darker than your usual skin color. It typically occurs on the face and is symmetrical, with matching marks on both sides of the face. Other areas of your body that are often exposed to sun can also develop melasma.
Brownish colored patches usually appear on the:
- bridge of the nose
It can also occur on the neck and forearms. The skin discoloration doesn’t do any physical harm, but you may feel self-conscious about the way it looks.
If you notice these symptoms of melasma, see your healthcare professional. They might refer you to a dermatologist, a doctor who specializes in treating skin disorders.
Coping and living with melasma
While not all cases of melasma will clear up with treatment, there are things you can do to make sure the condition doesn’t get worse and to minimize the appearance of the discoloration. These include:
- using makeup to cover areas of discoloration
- taking prescribed medication
- wearing sunscreen every day with SPF 30
- wearing a wide-brimmed hat that shields or provides shade for your face
Wearing protective clothing is especially important if you’ll be in the sun for an extended period of time.
If you’re self-conscious about your melasma, talk with your healthcare provider about local support groups or counselors. Meeting other people with the condition or talking with someone can make you feel better.