Beauty comes in all shades and colors. Even the absence of color is beautiful, though it is feared in some cultures. Those with vitiligo are stigmatized around the globe. Depending on where the person is, s/he may be persecuted. Much of the trauma is through social isolation and rejection. Psychological and emotional scars are deep.
...the absence of skin color or depigmentation that results in milky white patches, blotches or spots on the skin. It's considered an autoimmune disease, and no, it isn't contagious. Vitiligo occurs when melanin (the pigment that gives skin color) stops producing.
Vitiligo doesn't just affect skin. It also affects the hair, as loss pigmentation can turn hair white in the same area of white skin. Due to the lack of melanin and color, a person with vitiligo is more susceptible to developing skin cancer. If the white patch is close to the eye, it could spread there and cause loss of vision.
Although some sufferers experience itchy and inflamed skin and are at an increased risk of developing skin cancer, the medical community considers vitiligo more of a cosmetic issue with social consequences. As such, we are campaigning for awareness, support, community health education, advances in research and recognition for vitiligo. June 25 has been set aside as World Vitiligo Day. We are petitioning the United Nations for global recognition of this day. By the way...purple is the color for vitiligo awareness.
Join the Cause
If you'd like to make your voice heard, feel free to learn more and sign the petition at 25June.org.