Vitiligo : Myths vs Facts
Vitiligo is a skin condition which has been marred with numerous myths and superstitions. Here are some of them. # MYTH 1: People with vitiligo are born with patchy uneven skin because they have mixed-race parents. FACT: Vitiligo is not related to ethnicity of the parents and most people with it have even skin pigmentation at birth. Vitiligo is a progressive medical condition that generally emerges as discolored patches in a young person. # MYTH 2: Only dark-skinned people get vitiligo. FACT: Vitiligo affects people of all races equally; however, it may be more noticeable in people with dark skin. # MYTH 3: Vitiligo is related to other skin diseases such as skin cancer, leprosy etc. FACT: Vitiligo is a completely separate condition and not related to skin cancer or leprosy. It is thought to be an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system attacks and kills cells that make skin color, called melanocytes. The cause of the disorder remains unknown. # MYTH 4: Vitiligo only affects only exposed skin, such as on faces and hands. FACT: Vitiligo tends to occur more commonly in sun-exposed areas, such as hands, feet, arms, face, and lips. However, these patches can also occur in the armpits, groins, eyes, navel, genitals and rectal areas. # MYTH 5: Vitiligo gets affected by the type of food you eat. FACT: Diet doesn't affect Vitiligo in any manner. # MYTH 6: People with vitiligo are often impaired with other physical and mental disabilities. FACT: Most people with vitiligo are vibrant, normal individuals with a life-altering skin disorder. More common in people who have other autoimmune disorders, such as: Hyperthyroidism Adrenocortical insufficiency Alopecia areata(patches of hair baldness) Pernicious anemia # MYTH 7: You can cure vitiligo by rubbing a variety of oils into the skin or taking certain supplements. FACT: Unfortunately, there is currently no cure for vitiligo. However, there are a number of therapies including: UV light therapy, surgical skin and cellular grafts, tattooing, steroids, and medications. Also, some people simply opt to cover their skin with special cosmetics. # MYTH 8: Vitiligo is contagious. FACT: Vitiligo is not contagious and there’s no way to get it from someone else. So, there is no reason to avoid people who may have visible signs of the disorder.
Take part in World Vitiligo Day on June 25th and help in raising awareness to fight against bias and stigma.
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