Melasma is one of the most complicated and difficult skin conditions and “How do I treat it?” is one of the hardest questions to answer. The most important point to be aware of when dealing with this skin pigmentation condition is to know that it is stimulated by heat, so the treatment you have been considering must not apply heat otherwise you will make the condition worse.
In this article we explain how you can stop exacerbating melasma, answer frequently asked questions and discuss the leading melasma management program.
WHAT TRIGGERS MELASMA?
Melasma is primarily caused by a combination of sun exposure and hormonal changes (estrogen and progesterone) that trigger the darkening of pigmentation on the skin. It appears as dark patches mainly on the face, it usually appears on the cheekbones, forehead, upper lip and chin. It can fade during Winter and following pregnancy or when oral contraceptives are ceased.
It is sensitive to heat, so avoiding the following:
- Sun exposure on your face
- Saunas / steam rooms
- IPL treatment (due to the heat generated)
- Any other heat generating treatment
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How Do I Treat Melasma?
Avoid Q-switched lasers, even though in the past melasma has been treated with this older laser technology. Q-switched laser produces a lot of heat and requires a very high fluency (power) to break down pigment therefore Q-switch laser may remove some of the underlying pigment but the heat will stimulate new pigment. It is a risky and self defeating option.
We refer to the treatment as “melasma management” as it is a multi-step, holistic approach. Without maintenance treatment, it typically returns. Eden Laser Clinics are specialists in skin management and will tailor a plan to suit your needs. We use a combination of skin peels, skin care and picosecond laser. The PicoWay laser works at picosecond speed and produces next to no heat, effectively breaking down the pigmentation without exacerbating the condition. Chemical peels and skin care are essential to maintaining good skin integrity as the condition has many causes.
The PicoWay is a medical grade laser that removes skin pigmentation by delivering specific wavelengths of laser light into the skin in very short bursts of picosecond pulses of energy, creating a shockwave that fragments the pigment and allows the body’s immune system to attack and eliminate the dispersed pigment.
How many treatments will I need?
The number of treatments required depends on the individual, but it normally resolves in 3 to 4 treatments, spaced 4 weeks apart. Maintenance treatments are generally required. The clinicians at Eden Laser Clinics are responsible for explaining this process thoroughly during your free consultation. Each expertly trained and accredited clinician will assess your skin type and adjust the laser to provide the optimum setting to deliver the results you expect with minimum discomfort.
How much does laser skin pigmentation removal cost?
The cost of your treatment will depend on many factors including size of the pigmentation area.
For safe and effective melasma management, come in and see the skin experts at Eden Laser Clinic for a free consultation. We offer personalised skin care strategies to treat your skin concerns. During your free consultation we will discuss with you how many treatments are needed, a written quote with cost and specific information you will need to follow before, during and after your treatment.