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Blotches on Skin

Blotches on Skin

Genetic predisposition, skin disorders and autoimmune diseases are the major causes of blotches on skin. Scroll down to learn about the common causes of white and red blotches on skin along with preventive measures and home remedies for the same.
Kalpana Kumari
Last Updated: Mar 12, 2018
Not many of us are blessed with healthy, radiant skin that is free of blemishes. Since our skin remains exposed to pollutants, pathogens or allergenic substances present in the environment, there's a great need to protect it from such disease-causing agents and nurture it well especially when it is exposed to extreme weather conditions. Inflammatory skin conditions, pathogenic infections and skin ailments caused by hormonal imbalance or environmental or genetic factors can also affect the texture and the appearance of one's skin. Besides contributory factors of a medical nature, inadequate skin care could also make one susceptible to blotchy skin. Unsightly skin blotches can certainly rob you off your natural beauty thereby affecting your self-esteem. It is therefore essential to ascertain the underlying cause and treat it as soon as possible. Knowing about what causes splotches or blotches on skin will prove to be of great help in preventing an outbreak in future.

What Causes White Blotches on Skin?

Skin discoloration or uneven skin tone can be attributed to a variety of factors. In humans, the color of the skin is imparted by a pigment called melanin. The cells that produce melanin are referred to as melanocytes. It is this pigment that protects our skin from the ultraviolet rays of the sun. If the production of melanin decreases, one is most likely to develop patches on skin. White blotches on skin are most likely to appear if one suffers from disorders that involve the destruction of melanocytes. Vitiligo is one such disorder wherein the destruction of melanin-producing cells leads to development of white spots on skin. Medical professionals give various theories to explain vitiligo. According to some, vitiligo occurs due to a kind of genetic defect and may run in the family. Some believe that vitiligo is caused by an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system cannot differentiate between foreign invaders and body's own tissues and destroys the melonocytes in the process. It is believed that excessive sun exposure may trigger vitiligo, however, it is yet to be supported with scientific facts. Anyone can develop white blotches, irrespective of gender. It is seen that people generally develop it before the age 40. People with dark skin are at a greater risk of suffering from this skin ailment. If the treatment is started early, the prognosis is good. Treatments vary from topical applications to internal medicines and even radiation therapy. The common area of occurrence of white patches are lips, face, feet, arms and hands. There can be other parts of the body that may develop white blotches as well. These are the eyes, navel, groin, genital area, nostrils, armpits, rectal area and mouth.

What Causes Red Blotches on Skin?

The development of red blotches on skin is a common skin problem that may affect children as well as adults. The development of itchy red rashes or red blotches on skin may be attributed to inflammatory skin conditions such as acne, eczema or rosacea. Eczema is a term that is used to refer to inflammatory skin conditions. Allergic contact dermatitis and irritant contact dermatitis are conditions wherein one may develop skin blotches on coming in contact with allergens and irritants respectively. Exposure to harsh chemicals present in soaps, detergents, perfumes, metals, jewelry or skin care products are common contributory factors. Rosacea is another skin condition that is characterized by the development of red skin blotches on face. It is basically the dilation of blood vessels in the face that results in a flushed appearance. Psoriasis is another condition that may cause scaly plaques and red blotches on the scalp. Blotchy skin could also be attributed to hormonal imbalance or use of certain drugs. Acne is a very common skin condition that is characterized by development of pimples or pustules. It is often triggered by hormonal disturbance. Use of birth control pills may also increase the risk of red blotches in women. Excessive exposure to sun can also spark the onset of red spots on skin. If you develop red spots on your face or elsewhere after spending long hours in sun, then avoid or reduce the period of sun exposure.

What are the Treatments for Blotches on Skin?

Well, many health care professionals say that there is no medical treatment available for conditions like vitiligo, but use of corticosteroids may prove helpful in the treatment of white blotches on skin. It is believed that exposure to sun and ultraviolet rays can promote the healing process, but it would be better to consult a doctor before trying out such remedies. The chances of re-pigmentation are always higher if one is healthy. Thus, one must make the right lifestyle choices so as to speed up the healing process.

As far as red skin blotches are concerned, treatment may involve topical application of medicated creams and lotions or administration of oral drugs. Once the causative factors get treated, red blotches on skin are most likely to disappear on their own. You may try some home remedies for removing red skin blotches. These are mentioned below.
  • Extract juice from the red ochre plant. Mix a teaspoon of this juice with 2-3 drops of honey. Take it twice a day for a couple of weeks.
  • Avoid the triggering factors like prolonged sun exposure. If you do step out on a sunny day, apply a sunscreen with a high SPF and wear a broad-rimmed hat. Protect your skin from harsh weather conditions.
  • Dry skin can also make one susceptible to skin problems which is why skin must be moisturized. However, make sure that you use good quality skin care products.
  • If you often develop itchy red blotches on skin, you could try natural remedies. You could apply aloe vera gel to get relief from itching.
  • You can also apply honey on irritated skin. Honey will certainly help in soothing inflamed skin.
  • Mix a teaspoon of turmeric powder in a glass of warm milk. Have it once a day.
If you want your skin to look flawless and radiant, make sure that you protect it from allergens and environmental irritants. Having a flawless skin will no longer seem an implausible dream if you follow a proper skin care regimen. If a skin condition runs in the family and you feel that you may be genetically predisposed to certain skin problems, take precautionary measures to prevent an outbreak. You can follow self-care measures or try home remedies to improve the texture and appearance of your skin. But in case of slow or no improvement, do pay a visit to a dermatologist. A timely diagnosis and treatment will certainly prove beneficial in making unsightly blotches disappear.