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Vitiligo Overview: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and Recovery

Vitiligo is a skin condition where skin loses its pigmentation because of autoimmune attack or lack of melanin hormone.

Understand Vitiligo

Who Have Risk of Vitiligo

  1. Diabetes (Type-1)
  2. Addison’s Disease
  3. Rheumatoid Arthritis
  4. Anemia
  5. Psoriasis
  6. Thyroid disease

Is Vitiligo a Common Disease?

Vitiligo is not a common disease. Only 0.5% to 1% of the overall population has vitiligo. Research shows that this is a very rare disease. Other research shows that this is not even a disease just a skin condition. Nevertheless, it is not contagious or harmful. But sometimes it can be irritating in the sunlight.

Primary Stage of Vitiligo

What are the early symptoms of vitiligo? Vitiligo can be shown in any part of the body. It is easily visible on the dark skin. It can start at the face, neck, arm, or other parts of the body. Vitiligo starts with small patches on the skin. After that, it starts widening those patches and covers body parts gradually.

Types of Vitiligo

There are two main types of vitiligo.

  1. Segmental Vitiligo
  2. Non-Segmental Vitiligo

Segmental Vitiligo:

Non-Segmental Vitiligo:

Non-segmental vitiligo is also known as bilateral or generalized vitiligo. This is a common type of vitiligo. It may appear on both sides of the patient’s body. Non-segmental vitiligo occurs because of an autoimmune system.

  • The autoimmune system is different than the regular immune system. The regular immune system fights against viruses, bacteria, or other diseases in the body.
  • Where the autoimmune system harms the body’s internal healthy cells or hormones.

Symptoms of Vitiligo

There are a few common symptoms of vitiligo

  • White patches on the skin. Patches can be lighter than the skin color.
  • Patches on the hair or inside of the mouth.
  • Skin irritation in the sunlight.

Symptoms can be itchy or irritating in most of cases but not all the cases.

Causes of Vitiligo

Vitiligo can affect for some specific reason like

  • Autoimmune system
  • Genetic reason
  • Lack of pigment on the skin

Genetic Vitiligo

Vitiligo Diagnosis

  1. If there is a vitiligo history in your family?
  2. If there is an autoimmune history in your family?
  3. Is the affected area of your skin injured by something?
  4. Is this the condition of your skin because of sunburn or tanning?
  5. Did you have tried any treatment before but the skin condition is still the same?

Vitiligo Treatment

In some cases vitiligo is treatable. There are natural, herbal, and modern medical treatments are available now. By applying any of these methods vitiligo is fully or partially treatable.

Natural Treatments for Vitiligo

  • Papaya: Papaya is a delicious and healthy fruit. It is also helpful to treat vitiligo. Cut the papaya into pieces and rub on the vitiligo-affected skin area. Do it regularly and drink papaya juice to replenish the melanin cells.
  • Basil Leaves: Basil leaves have anti-aging and anti-viral properties. Mixing basil leaves paste with lime juice will stimulate the skin cells to produce melanin. Which is a very effective treatment for vitiligo.
  • Walnuts: Walnuts are very effective in vitiligo treatment. Eating at least 7 walnuts every day can improve your vitiligo condition. You also can make a paste of walnuts and apply it to vitiligo affected area.
  • Foods with high Vitamin C and Zinc: Foods that contain zinc and vitamin C are very effective in vitiligo treatment.
  • Turmeric: Turmeric paste is very effective in treating vitiligo. Apply turmeric paste in vitiligo affected area for 20-30 minutes and let it dry then wash it. Apply this consecutively for 2-3 months.

Medical Treatment for Vitiligo

There is no specific medical treatment for vitiligo. Some methods can be applied to treat vitiligo

  • Medications: Medicated skin cream available for vitiligo (Ruxolitinib Cream 1.5 INN topical Janus kinase Inhibitor), Corticosteroids, or a calcineurin inhibitor may help in improving vitiligo condition.
  • Light Therapy: Different types of light therapy including UV therapy may improve vitiligo.
  • Surgery:  Surgery is another option to treat vitiligo.
  • Depigmentation:  Depigmentation is a process of removing dark skin to match

Herbal Treatment for Vitiligo

  • Ginkgo Biloba: Ginkgo biloba (Maidenhair tree) is one of the oldest trees on the earth. It has been used for more than a thousand years to treat people. Ginkgo extract has been shown in the treatment of allergies, varicose veins, premenstrual syndrome, vertigo, and others. It is also very helpful to treat vitiligo.
  • Cucumis melo: Cucumis melo (Muskmelon) is a species of Cucumis. Cucumis extract helps treat vitiligo. Because it has antioxidants that naturally contain high SOD. Superoxide Dismutase helps to stop melanocyte construction by the oxidative stress in the first step of vitiligo.

How to Prevent Vitiligo

There is no well-known method of preventing vitiligo. By following the below steps you can reduce the risk of vitiligo.

  1. Avoid the sun exposure as much as you can. You can use sun protection cream which will save your skin from sunburn.
  2. Take care of your skin regularly. Apply moisturizer to your skin.
  3. Be careful about skin injury or damage.
  4. Manage any underlying autoimmune system.

After all, we can say that vitiligo is not contagious or deadly. So, do not worry if you have vitiligo. Take proper steps to treat vitiligo and follow your doctor to be safe.

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