Birthmarks appear as colored skin spots which are present at birth or appear shortly after birth. They come in different colors such as black, tan, brown, white, pink, pale blue, red or purple. Some birthmarks present themselves on the surface of the skin only in the form of colorations. Others are either extended under the skin tissues or are raised above the skin surface. Pigmented birthmarks occur due to an overgrowth of the cells which produce color in the skin. Apart from having different colors they also have different borders and textures and they are all unique in their shapes and sizes.
There is no known cause for birthmarks and they are certainly not inheritated.
There are 3 types of pigmented birthmarks; the café-au-lait spots, nevi and Mongolian spots.
They can appear anywhere on the body either one or in multiples. They are commonly known to be present at birth but some may appear in the first few years of a child. They are harmless and their color are similar to the color of coffee with milk and are oval in shape.
They can be either flat or raised but different in color ranging from tan, black, brown and pink. Moles do not present any health risks but large ones should be checked out by a doctor to make sure that they are not precancerous. They can appear anywhere in the body alone or in groups. Moles occur when cells in the skin fail to spread throughout the skin and grow in a cluster instead.
They are bluish-gray and they appear more in children with darker skin. They are usually found on the buttocks or on the lower back and they fade away within a few years on their own.
Treatment of pigmented birthmarks will depend on the nature of the tissue involved. They can be treated either by laser surgery, cryosurgery and Electrodessication or scalpel surgery.
Pigmented birthmarks are successfully treated by a specific wavelength of light known as laser surgery. The melanin in the skin selectively absorbs the wavelength light leaving the surrounding skin untouched. Because lasers target specific areas no damage is done and this results in an even skin tone. Laser surgery birthmark removal is relatively painless, no blisters or wounds are left behind and patients can resume their normal activities immediately after. You may however need several sessions to acquire the desired results.
During cryosurgery extreme cold is applied to the affected area so as to destroy the tissue. In Electrodessication the tissues are destroyed by dehydration which is induced by a high-frequency electric current.
Pigmented birthmarks can be removed through surgical excision which also minimizes the resulting scar. Port-wine stains, haemangiomas and Mongolian birthmarks are excellent cadidates for this type of treatment.
Always consult a qualified dermatologist if you want a pigmented birthmark to be removed.
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