Major Causes For Loss of Skin Pigment

Loss of Skin Pigment

Only a very small portion of people on the planet have a loss of skin pigment on some part of their body. This condition is also known as vitiligo. Vitiligo manifests itself as patches of white on various parts of the skin. This is because these patches contain either no or very few melanocytes (cells that are responsible for the production of melanin). While the fundamental root of what is responsible for the loss of skin pigment is understood, much less is known about underlying vitiligo causes that are the source of this uncommon skin condition.

There are many theories surrounding this and other skin pigmentation disorders, but at this time, only speculation about the causes of vitiligo exists. For instance, once of the most common ideas is that an autoimmune condition or disorder is responsible for the white patches on skin that sufferers bear. Other suggestions include a genetic oxidative stress imbalance or a neural cause. External forces have also been potentially linked to a loss of skin pigment. For instance, chemical exposure from certain occupations have been pondered as causes, particularly in the cases of white spots on hands that might be associated with labor or physical activity. Skin damage such as that caused from serious and destructive sunburn or invasive wounds may also play a role contributing to a loss of skin pigment. Additionally, even viruses are thought to be potentially responsible for the loss of skin pigment associated with vitiligo.

Regardless of the cause of your vitiligo, there are certain precautions that you should take. For instance, sunlight exposure should be avoided as much as possible. Additionally, spreading of the spots or areas lacking pigmentation does occur and is all but impossible to predict. In some cases, the spread and multiplication are very rapid with considerable increase in appearance occurring in just a few short weeks. In other cases, years may go by without so much as a new spot here or there every few months. There is some good news however. For starters, you can’t share a loss of skin pigment. It’s not contagious and you can’t pass it around from person to person (bear in mind however that if you have a case of this skin deep ailment that is caused by a contagious mechanism, such as a virus, that caused it could very well be contagious.

There are many treatment options for a loss of skin pigment. Some of the most common early methods include creams and balms, many of which are prescription, and different types of light therapy. For non responsive or very bothersome spots, more intense treatment may be necessary such as skin grafts and de-pigmenting, although these are always reserved for the most severe cases of a loss of skin pigment.

Talk to your doctor about any areas of your skin that look like they might be losing or have lost pigmentation. The earlier you identify problem areas, the more likely you will be able to help potentially identify a source and a solution that works best for you, your skin, and your condition.