Types of Birthmarks: Everything You Need to Know About Your Markings

Birthmarks are unique marks or discolorations on the skin that are present at birth or appear shortly after. They come in various shapes, sizes, and colors. Here are some common types of birthmarks:

1. Pigmented Birthmarks:

Pigmented birthmarks are caused by an overgrowth of pigment cells in the skin. They can be brown, black, or bluish-gray in color. Examples include:

– Café-au-lait spots: These are flat, light brown birthmarks that are usually oval in shape.
– Mongolian spots: These are bluish-gray birthmarks commonly found on the lower back or buttocks. They usually fade over time.
– Nevus of Ota: This is a bluish-gray birthmark that appears on the face, typically around the eye area.

2. Vascular Birthmarks:

Vascular birthmarks occur due to abnormal blood vessels in the skin. They can be red, pink, or purplish in color. Examples include:

– Strawberry hemangiomas: These are raised, red birthmarks that may appear shortly after birth and grow rapidly in the first year of life. They often shrink and fade over time.
– Port-wine stains: These are flat, pink or reddish birthmarks that can vary in size and shape. They often persist throughout life and may darken over time.

3. Congenital Melanocytic Nevi:

Congenital melanocytic nevi are brown or black birthmarks caused by an overgrowth of pigment-producing cells. They can vary in size and shape. Larger nevi have a higher risk of developing into melanoma.

4. Stork Bites (Salmon Patches) and Angel Kisses:

Stork bites, also known as salmon patches, are pink or red birthmarks commonly found on the back of the neck, eyelids, or forehead. Angel kisses are similar marks found on the forehead or between the eyebrows. They often fade during infancy.

It’s important to note that birthmarks are typically harmless and don’t require treatment unless they pose cosmetic or health concerns. However, if you have any concerns about a birthmark, its appearance, or changes in its size or color, it’s best to consult a healthcare professional or dermatologist for proper evaluation and guidance.