Birthmarks

IMG_0683I haven’t spoken much about Tobias’ birthmark. It didn’t appear until he was approx. three weeks old. I have since found out that it is part of Gavin’s family and it usually passes within the first two years of their life. At first I hated that my boy had been tainted but now I’ve kind of fallen in love with it. It makes him unique and I would certainly be able to pull him out of a line up of babies! When it first appeared I did so much research into what was appearing on my baby and found it helpful to know what I was dealing with.

What are birthmarks?
Birthmarks are markings that can be permanent or they may fade over time. From my research I have found there are two main types of birthmark:

• Vascular birthmarks.
• Pigmented birthmarks.

Here are some examples:

Strawberry haemangioma
This is a raised, red strawberry mark. One or more can appear on your baby’s skin within a few days or weeks of birth. They will probably form on the head or neck. They tend to grow very quickly up to a baby being six months old and then should disappear by the time they are seven years old. This is what Tobias has above his right eye, its small but apparent and is slightly raised.

Cavernous haemangioma
This is a lumpy bluish or purplish mass. It can grow quickly in the first six months then start shrinking by the time they are eighteen months. A cavernous haemangioma should be gone by the time they are five years old.

Large strawberry and cavernous haemangiomas near a baby’s eyes, nose, mouth or bottom can cause problems as they get larger. They may affect a baby’s sight, breathing, eating or cause problems when they go to the toilet. These types may need treatment with medicine to shrink them. Sometimes they need removing completely with laser treatment.

Port wine stains
These are flat red or purple marks ranging in size. Port wine stains will usually appear on one side of your baby’s face. Light ones may fade, but most get bigger as a baby grows, becoming deeper in colour, and more raised and bumpy. Port wine stains may bother a baby as he gets older. Knowing how i was growing up with acne anything that can help is welcomed and specialised make-up can be used to disguise the markings. They can also be treated with laser therapy, which may not remove them completely but may lighten the marks.

IMG_0908Salmon patches
These are also known as stork marks or angel kisses. They are flat, pale pink patches that can appear on a baby’s eyelids, between their eyebrows, in the middle of their forehead and at the back of their necks. They should disappear within a few months.

Café-au-lait spots
These are light-brown patches of skin. Lots of people have these. In fact Tobias and I share the same marking on our left feet. They are harmless generally, however if they grow in size or more appear when your baby gets older they need to get checked out.

IMG_0911Congenital moles
A baby can have these at birth. They are brown or black. Congenital moles can vary in size and some are raised or hairy. Congenital moles sometimes become smaller over time, but they can darken during puberty. These may be able to be removed with surgery. If a mole has changed in size, shape or colour, or if it starts bleeding or itching, it needs checking out by a doctor.

Mongolian spots
These are bluish or greenish bruise-like marks. They may have them at birth or within a few weeks of birth. The spots should disappear by the time a baby is five years old.

I can definitely say that I found it very distressing when the birthmark first appeared on Tobias. By no means is it a big birthmark nor is it causing him any irritation. It isn’t in a ‘bad’ area, it’s just upsetting to see a mark on his face. However I keep reminding myself that it isn’t causing him any trouble and I was advised by our GP that it is best to leave it alone. Many birthmarks will disappear when they grow up so for now I’m taking lots of pictures so I can show Tobias when he’s older and to remind myself how cute it makes him.

IMG_0901Much love
Rebecca

 

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