As Australians, we love the outdoors. Can you blame us? We have some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with amazing scenery and wildlife everywhere you look. And when it comes to the male population, you would be hard-pressed to find a more masculine bunch. Aussie men enjoy rugby, beer and the great outdoors. Unfortunately, this attitude is not always to our benefit.
It seems that despite our love of sunshine less than a third of Australian men use sun protection. Shocking statistics when you consider that the rates for getting melanoma before the age of 85 is one in fourteen and that 69 percent of Australians who die from melasma are male. And if that wasn’t bad enough, there is also the chance of developing melasma on your face. You’re probably shaking your head in disagreement here, thinking melasma is a women’s disease, as it’s often called the ‘mask of pregnancy’. You could not be more wrong. Here are some of the common misconceptions men have about melasma:
- Only women can get melasma – while hormonal changes and oral contraceptive use are what causes melasma in women, men get it too, usually after a period of prolonged exposure to UV radiation over a holiday or summer break.
- It will go away by itself – it’s true that melasma can appear in summer months and then disappear in the winter, but eventually it’s going to pitch up permanently. And once it’s there for good, there is no magical melasma cure.
- It’s just aesthetic – melasma causes pigmentation
- , which won’t kill you or affect your health. What it will do, though, is age you before your time and make you look saggier and baggier than you actually are. So unless you want to spend the next few decades being mistaken for your wife’s father and having people give up their seat for you on the bus, you probably should start looking for a treatment for melasma.
At the Victoria Dermal Group, we find that many men are reluctant to make appointments with us for skin conditions such as those for treating melasma. What they don’t realise is that the treatment for melasma it is more than just skin deep and that the best ones (such as melasma laser treatment and melasma treatment creams) create a habit of monitoring and caring for your skin. Apart from wearing sunscreen for melasma prevention, the best treatments aren’t found over the counter, and professional assistance is your best bet. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse it is likely to become.