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Chloasma gravidarum: causes, treatment and prevention

by Alivia Nyhan
Published: Last Updated on

Acquired hyperpigmentation of the skin, especially that exposed to the sun, such as various areas of the face, is called chloasma or melasma, commonly called cloth. It is characterized by the appearance of diffuse spots, and its coloration can vary from a dark yellow, brown, or gray, being of smooth surface. Generally, they do not cause discomfort, except for exceptions that could feel itchy in the area.

Although men can also suffer from this condition, it is more common in women, especially between 20 and 40. During pregnancy, it is known as chloasma gravidarum or pregnancy mask. It sometimes spreads over the entire face giving that appearance, which is why many women worry, or their self-esteem is affected. However, it is possible to remove these stains, and in this FastlyHealarticle, we inform you about chloasma gravidarum: treatment and how to avoid it.

Causes of chloasma gravidarum

The factors that intervene for melasma to occur are genetic predisposition, a side effect of cosmetics, drugs, or hormonal treatments, such as contraceptives, exposure to the sun, nutritional deficiencies, hormonal disorders, or other endocrine diseases, including diabetes.

In the case of chloasma gravidarum, the spots result from hormonal changes in the first months of this stage in the levels of hormones such as progesterone and estrogen because they stimulate more excellent melanin production. This pigment gives color to the skin, hair, and eyes, which, together with exposure to ultraviolet rays, makes melasma evident in areas such as the cheeks, nose, the central part of the forehead, and the chin.

For this reason, it is possible to notice chloasma from the third or fourth month of pregnancy and usually remains even until after delivery, and then gradually fades in the following weeks; However, although it is not very frequent, this hyperpigmentation of the skin could take longer to disappear, as cases in which it has taken years.

Treatment for chloasma gravidarum

The way to diagnose that the spots present on the skin are treated as chloasmas is through Wood’s lamp or black light, whose illumination reaches the dermis and helps detect the increase of melanin in the area.

This may not be necessary regarding treatment for chloasma gravidarum because this disorder tends to fade sometime after delivery. However, when melasma covers a large part of the face, is very dark in color, takes time to disappear, or has not completely faded, the doctor may indicate the use of dermatological products to combat the cloth.

According to the degree of chloasma, it will be the type of treatment that the specialist recommends, starting with creams that reduce melanin formation, including those containing benzoquinone, hydroquinone, topical corticosteroids, tretinoin, or azelaic acid. On the other hand, if chloasma gravidarum is serious, chemical exfoliation procedures, known as peels or laser treatment, will likely be required as determined by the physician.

Tips to prevent chloasma gravidarum

Because melasma is a skin condition that anyone can suffer from regardless of age and that becomes a factor that affects self-esteem in many people, it is best to take into account some measures to reduce the probability of suffering from it, especially for those who are planning to get pregnant or are starting this stage, since they are more prone. Therefore, to avoid chloasma gravidarum, you can follow the following recommendations:

  • Apply sunscreen before you go out; even if it’s cloudy or raining, look for those with a broad-spectrum, water-resistant label.
  • Avoid doing activities in direct sunlight or exposing yourself to it for a long time; if necessary, opt for the first hours of the day or at dusk.
  • Wear clothing that protects you from ultraviolet rays, such as those made of synthetic or semi-synthetic fiber, hats, and sunglasses.
  • Practice relaxing exercises, especially if you are constantly under stress, as it can trigger pregnancy spotting.
  • Use cosmetics appropriate to your skin, and leave immediately if any cause you discomfort or observe alterations in your face; you should consult a dermatologist.
  • Use lightening creams; you can apply it at night and leave it to act during this.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Chloasma gravidarum: treatment and how to avoid it, we recommend entering our Pregnancy and baby health category .

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