Moles are spots on the skin caused by an accumulation of either small blood vessels (red marks) or pigmentation (brown spots). They can, as the name suggests, be seen from the time of birth, but they may also develop later. Some birthmarks disappear by themselves, some are surgically removed, but most remain without causing problems. There are virtually no dangerous birthmarks that appear during childhood.

Strawberry marks (hemangioma)

Hemangiomas can develop during the child’s first few weeks into clear red, raised skin lesions. Strawberry marks grow gradually (and can become quite large) until the child is 3-4 months old. Then, they spontaneously begin to whiten, and gradually fade. Strawberry marks usually disappear by themselves at 2-4 years of age, and almost always before age 7-8.

Portwine stains

A kind of malformation of the skin’s small blood vessels causes a dark red spot on the skin, usually in the face, arms or legs. This kind of mark will not disappear spontaneously, but it may fade slightly over time. If not, it can be treated with a special laser.

Stork marks and angel kisses

Salmon-colored patches on the forehead, eyelids and neck held by nearly half of all newborns. The marks usually appear more clearly when the child gets upset or is screaming. Marks in the face disappear spontaneously during the first years of life, while a stork bite in the neck could remain for a longer period of time or become permanent.

Mongolian spots

A mongolian spot looks a lot like a bruising of the skin, usually at the bottom of the back or on the buttocks. They are usually seen on dark-pigmented newborns. Mongolian spots practically always disappear spontaneously during the first years of life.

Moles (naevi)

Moles are brown, round, raised and sometimes hairy birthmarks that usually do not disappear by themselves over time. They are usually harmless but can be removed if they are bothersome, unsightly, or if they start to change shape, size or color.


Café-au-lait-spots are a type of smooth, often irregular, light brown or beige spots on the skin. The spots themselves are harmless but if your child has more than six café-au-lait-spots at the age of 5, you should show it to your doctor to rule out the possibility of your child having a disease called neurofibromatosis.

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