Many babies havebirthmarkswhen they are born. Some birthmarks appear in the first few weeks of life. These marks can be red, pink, brown, tan or blue.There is no way to prevent birthmarks. Most are benign and fade in early childhood.
Some birthmarks, however, may be more dramatic and cause cosmetic problems, or even be precursors to cancer.There are two major categories of birthmarks: red andpigmented.
Red birthmarks can range from tiny, pink dots to large, deep-red marks. Red birthmarks are caused by blood vessels very close to the surface of the skin, and are also calledvascularbirthmarks.
There are two types of vascular birthmarks:macularandhemangioma. Macular birthmarks or stains are sometimes known as stork bites or angel's kisses. They are extremely common in newborns and are caused bycapillariesthat are visible through the skin.
These tiny, pink marks are most often found on the forehead, eyelids and back of the neck. They require no treatment and usually fade as the baby grows. Hemangiomas, known as strawberry birthmarks, are also very common. Most are small and harmless.
The red color and slightly raised appearance are caused by a large number of blood vessels that are closely packed at the surface of the skin. They usually appear around the face, neck, scalp or chest, and are more common in females.
Nearly all strawberry birthmarks disappear by age 9.
Pigmented birthmarks are areas of skin where the color is different from the color of the rest of the skin. These are normal birthmarks and are usually not indicative of other problems.
However, if you have several red spots that are very large, they might indicateneurofibromatosis-- a genetic disease that causes abnormal cell growth of nerve tissues -- and should be examined by a doctor.
Children with darker skin coloration may have a birthmark called Mongolian spots. These are bluish spots, usually on the lower back or buttocks, that look like (and are sometimes mistaken for) bruises. They usually fade over time.