What Are the Various Types of Birthmarks?

January 15, 2023

The mole on the girl's face closeupThere are different types of birthmarks that can occur in an individual. They may affect skin color or texture at the time of birth itself, or they can appear anytime during a person's life. Some of the most common types of birthmarks include café au lait spots, moles and hemangiomas. Dr. Margaret Summerville of Chevy Chase Dermatology can educate you on these three birthmarks and their characteristics.

  • Cafe au lait spots. Café au lait spots are commonly seen among infants and young children. In fact, almost 60% of all healthy newborns have this type of birthmark on their skin, which is usually soft-colored with a lighter shade than the rest of the body. These birthmarks are more prevalent among light-skinned individuals and are caused due to excessive production of pigment cells in the skin.
  • Moles. Moles, also known as melanocytic nevi, are another type of common birthmark that can appear on the skin at any time during a person's life. They are generally brown or black circular spots that contain clusters of pigmented cells. Moles may be flat or raised in appearance, and they often grow larger with age. They can appear anywhere on the body but are found most commonly on the face, neck or arms.
  • Hemangiomas. Hemangiomas, also known as strawberry marks or infantile hemangiomas, are growths that develop from blood vessels under the skin during infancy. They are usually raised in appearance and may change color over time. While most hemangiomas resolve without treatment, some might require surgical removal if they become very large or affect a person's vision or breathing.

Schedule an Appointment With a Dermatologist To Learn More

While birthmarks are mostly harmless and do not require medical intervention, it is always best to consult a dermatologist if you notice any new or unusual growths on your skin. This way, you can ensure that any potential health risks are properly assessed and managed as required. In fact, it is recommended that everyone have a skin cancer screening annually, regardless of age and sun exposure. Dr. Margaret Summerville and her team at Chevy Chase Dermatology can assist with this and many other cosmetic services for the skin and body. Call 301-656-SKIN to request an appointment at her Chevy Chase, MD, area practice.


Category: Moles and birthmarks


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