September 27, 2018

Yes, Melasma is Beatable!!

Melasma is a skin condition, characterized by facial hyperpigmentation (light to dark brown patches) mostly in the face, V-neck and forearms. While it affects the patient’s psyche immensely, understanding the basics of the disease might help cure and prevent its aggravation.

THE PRONE POPULATION

The affected class consists of pregnant women, those using oral contraceptives, post-menopausal women taking combined hormone replacement therapy. Thyroid dysfunction and use of certain cosmetics and usage of anti-epileptic drugs, especially in older women, may also cause the condition.

Sun & UV exposure impacts the condition in a big percentage of affected population. A high level of exposure causes exacerbation and avoidance, fading away upto a great extent. Genetics is also said to play its role in upto 18% of the affected population. However the exact process underplaying these causative factors is not known exactly.
“Cholasma”,Melasma caused due to pregnancy is typically observed in the second or third trimester. It can show up at any age, from twenties to early fifties. Generally, it may get resolved months after delivery but if it persists, it indicates an increased risk of Melasma associated with future pregnancies.

MEET A DERMATOLOGISTS TO BEAT IT

Fortunately, Melasma can be treated well by Dermatologists. It may not be treated instantly. Clinical success with topical therapy can take time. Considering the site of action are delicate areas like face, highly aggressive therapies are not recommended. The recommended treatment consists of face wash for exfoliation, a depigmenting cream that helps fight Melasma and a sunscreen that prevents exacerbation. So, don’t let Melasma attack your psyche because you can beat it for sure!

September 27, 2018

The shades of Melanin

In India, quite a good number of men and women are not happy with their skin tone if it is not fair. That’s how the market remains flooded with various types of fairness creams. Little do people understand that skin tone is a gifted trait from our creator? The way our eyes,nose,lips are of specific shape and size determined by our genes, similarly the complexion too is determined by genes expressing the chemical “melanin” in a specific pattern and concentration. High concentration of melanin provides the darker complexion and a darker tan upon sun, UV exposure.

MELANIN & MELASMA CONNECTION

Contrary to the dislike of the dark complexion causing chemical, it is a fact that the more the Melanin the better the skin health. Melanin protects the skin from DNA alterations, UV radiations & skin cancer. However, an excess production of Melanin causes hyperpigmentation (dark patches in sun exposed areas like face), a condition called Melasma. The hyperpigmentation pattern can be different for various people.

CAUSES OF MELASMA

Too much of Sun exposure is the prime reason for the condition however genetics & hormonal changes also might cause it. In certain phases of life, women are more prone to the condition like Pregnancy, on contraceptives, those receiving hormonal therapy during menopause.The condition may or may not be transitory.

DERMATOLOGISTS CAN TREAT, MELASMA

While there are multiple treatments available in the market,it is always recommended to meet a Dermatologists and take the right set of medication. Some cream can cause irreversible side effects too, if misused. Also, self -medication or word of mouth should be totally avoided as one cream may not be fit for treatment of various types of Melasma. Steroids or hydroquinone should not be taken unless prescribed by a doctor. The key to success in Melasma treatment is compliance to the treatment & patience for realizing the results as an immediate reversal cannot be expected. Love your skin, its blessed with protective Melanin. Yes unfortunately, it can cause Melasma in certain individuals but fortunately it is very much treatable.

Psoriasis, a skin condition characterized by red inflammation of the skin, affects about 3 percent of the world’s population. Once diagnosed by the doctor, you may be recommended topical creams for psoriasis treatment, light therapy or systematic medications. However, there are many precautions you can take or do home remedies to ease the discomfort and severity of the skin condition.

One of the main triggers for psoriasis is dry skin. Start by moisturising your skin with a good cream for psoriasis, recommended by your medical practitioner. In the meantime, discontinue use of soaps, perfumes and any other fragrant creams that may irritate your sensitive skin. You could also install a humidifier in your home to keep the air moist.

Although psoriasis manifests itself on the exterior, the problems begin inside the body. Supplement your body with nutrients like vitamin D, fish oil, aloe Vera and so on. But before you take any dietary supplements, check with your doctor. It may also help to alter your daily diet by eliminating red meat, sugar, caffeine and fatty foods. Instead, consume foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids that help reduce inflammation. You could also add turmeric to your food to minimise flare-ups. Remember to reduce or completely stop alcohol consumption and smoking.

Get a little bit of sunlight every day. While this is something you should consult your doctor about, as too much sun can have inverse effects; a good amount of sun rays can be beneficial.

While taking bath, avoid hot water. Instead, prepare a lukewarm soak with Epsom salt, olive oil or milk to soothe the itching; and moisturise soon after bath.

Finally, take care of your mental health. Cutting down stress with counselling, meditation, yoga or other recreational activities will help keep flare-ups in check.

Nothing would make you feel more confident than having glowing and radiant skin. Great skin makes you look younger and feel healthier. There are many ways to take care of your skin. So go ahead and make your skin glow. You deserve to look great and feel fabulous.

You see it on TV, read it in magazines and find it on your skin creams. But do you really know and understand what SPF is?
SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor. The SPF in your sunscreen determines the level of sun protection your skin gets from UV rays.

UV rays are of two types – UVA and UVB. Most sunscreens protect the skin from UVB, which causes sunburn and could lead to skin cancer. UVA causes skin damages like tanning, skin ageing and wrinkles.

The SPF number in your sunscreen is an indication of how long the sun’s rays will take to burn your skin, provided you use it exactly as directed. If your SPF is 30, it means your skin will stay safe for 30 times longer than without the sunscreen. However, an SPF 50 doesn’t necessarily mean 50 times the protection; but it cuts back the UV radiation by almost 50%, compared to SPF 30.

The highest SPF does not really provide the best protection.

1. Use a minimum SPF of 15 for limited sun exposure on a daily basis.
2. Ideally choose SPF 30 or higher for extended sun exposure everyday.
3. Reapply sunscreen every 2-3 hours for maximum protection.
4. Choose water and sweat proof sunscreen.
5. If you are fair, have sensitive skin, are on photo-sensitizing medications, or have a family history of skin cancer, choose SPF 50 or more.
6. Choose a broad spectrum sunscreen to get protection from UVA rays as well.
In addition to sunscreen, use protective clothing, sun hats and sunglasses when you get out in the sun.