Myriad treatment options for melasma and hyperpigmentation, tailored to your needs in Bend, OR
Have “summer-time” freckles become year-round features of your face? Perhaps, you’ve noticed bigger, dark spots for the first time. Maybe, large grayish-brown splotches refuse to fade. From freckles to age spots and melasma, “hyperpigmentation” or areas that are darker than the surrounding skin, can describe a number of different conditions. Effective melasma and hyperpigmentation treatment starts with an evaluation. The providers at EsthetixMD Spa & Laser Center in Bend, OR, are adept at getting to the root of troublesome spots that can detract from your appearance and confidence.
Solar lentigines (“age spots”)
Flat spots that are tan, brown, or black are common among people aged 40 and older. Yet, “age” spots are not limited to individuals “of a certain age.” It’s estimated that sun damage is to blame for around 90% of skin aging. When your skin isn’t protected from Ultraviolet light produced by the sun’s rays or artificial sources, such as tanning beds, clusters of dark pigment, or melanin clump together. So, hyperpigmentation tends to develop in those areas that are exposed to UV light, such as the face, arms, chest, neck, shoulders, back, thighs, and calves.
Melasma or chloasma
Melasma distinguishes itself in appearance from freckles, solar lentigines, and other types of hyperpigmentation in more than a few ways:
- It tends to appear as gray-brown patches, not just shades of brown
- Appears as blotches that are particularly prevalent on the face; for instance, sides of the cheeks, forehead, nasal bridge, chin, and above the lips
- Darker-skinned individuals are at an elevated risk of developing due to the presence of more active melanin-producing cells in their skin (melanocytes)
Another way that melasma is differentiated from other forms of dark discoloration is its prevalence among women; only 10% of melasma sufferers are men. In fact, melasma is so associated with pregnant women that it is called the “pregnancy mask.” And, when pregnant women develop it, melasma is called “chloasma.” Hormonal changes are thought to trigger the condition.
Melasma may fade without treatment. We have a wide range of clinically-proven techniques, technologies, and products to recommend for superficial to deep dermal stubborn melasma and other forms of hyperpigmentation. Depending on your needs, you may benefit from a light-based therapy that targets the melanin pigment in the skin precisely and predictably. At EsthetixMD your result is our reason. So, we take investments in effective technology seriously. Our new picosecond laser system fires very rapid and ultra-short pulses to break up melanin among those patients with solar lentigines and melasma. Additionally, some patients may benefit from chemical or mechanical resurfacing to remove damaged skin cells and promote unblemished, new skin. Medications and topical products may help to fade spots. Our skilled team will also work with you to develop a preventive skin care regimen that keeps new spots from forming or hyperpigmentation from reappearing.
A final note
Some of the aforementioned approaches may be effective at lifting post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation caused by past acne outbreaks or other trauma to the skin. While most of the skin darkening mentioned here may be embarrassing or annoying, it is typically not a source of alarm. However, some types of skin cancer can resemble bigger freckles or solar lentigines. It’s important to have your skin examined regularly, especially if you have noticed any changes in the size, color, or shape of a spot, or if it feels different; for instance, sudden itching or tenderness.