Superstitions About Birthmarks

There are many superstitions regarding birthmarks.
There are many superstitions regarding birthmarks. (Image: BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images)

Birthmarks can come in all shapes, colors and sizes. It is possible for these skin blemishes to be flat or raised. Some people who have birthmarks may find them very embarrassing, while others simply want to learn more about them. Unfortunately, many people are misinformed about birthmarks due to many of the superstitions surrounding these common skin blemishes.

Cancer Superstition

A common misconception about birthmarks is that they are all cancerous. While some skin spots are cancerous, not all individuals who have birthmarks have cancer. In fact, most birthmarks do not require any form of treatment and are non-cancerous, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Large and tiny moles tend to be at the highest risk, however. Also keep an eye out for birthmarks which change in color, size or texture.

Time of Development Superstition

Due to their name, some people believe that birthmarks are always present at birth. While most of these skin blemishes are present at birth, hemangioma birthmarks may not appear until a few weeks after the baby has been born, reports the Mayo Clinic. Birthmarks do not appear late in life, however. Adults who notice new blemishes on their skin likely have freckles, which occur due to sun exposure. If a skin spot develops late in life, it is ideal to have it checked out by a doctor.

Permanence Superstition

Birthmarks are often thought to be skin blemishes that an individual will have for the rest of her life. In some cases, these skin blemishes are permanent. However, there is a chance that some birthmarks may go away on their own once a child gets older, according to the Nemours Foundation. Additionally, there is also a possibility that some of these skin spots may shrink in size once a child grows. Ultimately, while some birthmarks are permanent, others are not.

Pregnancy Superstitions

Many superstitions surround the idea that something the mother did during pregnancy causes the appearance of birthmarks. One myth suggests that if a woman craves or eats a lot of strawberries, her baby will have a strawberry-shaped birthmark. Other myths suggest that the emotions that a woman feels during pregnancy could lead to birthmarks. Although the cause of skin spots is not known, there is no evidence which supports the belief that the mother is to blame for birthmarks, according to the Nemours Foundation.

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