The skin is the largest organ of the body and the first defense barrier against the environment. Usually, we should maintain a homogeneous coloration throughout the entire skin, except where we receive more sun (arms, face, etc.), which tends to darken or become more pigmented than the rest. However, under certain conditions, the skin on the neck may darken intensely, and a profuse black spot may appear on the neck and in some other folds of the body.
In addition to darkening, that same skin could thicken and modify its texture and cause itching in the area. We explain in this FastlyHealarticle the causes of black spots on the neck, why they appear, and how to remove them.
Why do black spots appear on the neck?
Spots on the neck from the sun
The sun’s rays are called ultraviolet or UV rays due to the type of light wave they carry. The skin color is provided by a pigment naturally produced by your cells called melanin. Given the stimulation given by sunlight, the production of melanin increases, and with it, the coloration of the skin is changed or accentuated.
When we expose ourselves excessively and persistently to the sun’s rays, we can suffer an increase in melanin production at the level of the folds (armpits, elbows, neck), with which dark spots could appear on the skin of the neck.
Some skin diseases can cause your neck to become stained and look darker than the rest of your body. Among these diseases, we must consider:
- Melanosis de Riehl
- Macular amyloidosis
- Lichen planus
Acanthosis nigricans on the neck
It usually appears in people with prediabetes or diabetes and can even be one of the first signs to show up.
Due to the hormonal imbalance at the insulin level, the skin on the neck thickens, becomes velvety and blackened, making it look dirty.
Controlling insulin levels reduces its appearance. It can also appear in people with Cushing’s disease, obesity, or cancer.
See the article Acanthosis nigricans: causes, symptoms, and treatment.
Congenital dyskeratosis (or Zinsser-Engman-Cole syndrome) is a rare inherited disorder in which:
- Black spots on the neck in the form of a net.
- White spots inside the mouth.
- Nail dystrophy (irregular growth).
- Decrease in all blood cell series.
- Medullary aplasia.
As age advances and predominantly after 40 years, dark spots may appear on the skin of the neck called solar lentigines or liver spots.
They have no particular meaning, although they are more common in people with a high intake of ethyl alcohol.
This skin condition appears in people who maintain little or bad hygiene of their body.
It is appreciated mainly in children who do not adequately remove the dirt accumulated on their necks during the bath.
The side effect of some medications
Some medications can have as a side effect the darkening of some areas of the skin, including the neck.
Among the medications that could cause black spots on the neck, we find:
Some systemic diseases can also cause dark spots on the neck. Among these, we can mention:
- Chronic liver diseases.
- Pituitary tumors (which regulate the production of melanin).
- Addison’s disease.
How to remove black spots on the neck: medical treatments
The treatment of black spots on the neck should be indicated by a dermatologist because, depending on the cause, the specific indication will be:
- The different skin conditions will require the appropriate treatment for each of them (use of tetrionin, retinoic acid, antifungals, etc.).
- In acanthosis nigricans, adequate metabolic and endocrinological control of the patient will be vital for the disappearance of the spots.
- The dyskeratosis congenital requires implementing of mitigation measures (sunscreen, exfoliants, etc.), as their hereditary condition cannot eliminate all of the stains.
- In aging, the best measure to take is moisturizers and the consumption of antioxidant agents (vitamins A, C, and E) to prevent their appearance.
- In dermatitis neglecta, proper grooming corrects the problem.
- In the case of stains due to drug use, it will be essential to evaluate the possibility of suspending them and changing them for similar ones that do not have this associated effect.
- In the different systemic diseases, adequate control of each of them will lead to the disappearance of the spots.
Home remedies for black spots on the neck
There is no single home remedy that can eliminate black spots on the neck because, in many cases, the resolution will go hand in hand with some medication.
However, some general recommendations are essential to follow, as they would help to avoid its formation and reduce its extension and intensity:
- Use exfoliating creams on the neck (in the stained area) twice a week.
- Use moisturizers daily.
- Routine application of sunscreen on people prone to the formation of spots.
- I wash the neck with plenty of warm water and soap two or three times a day, with supervision in the case of children.
- Ingestion of a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables.
This article is merely informative. At FastlyHeal .com, we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor if you present any condition or discomfort.
If you want to read more articles similar to Black spots on the neck: why they come out and how to remove them, we recommend entering our Skin, hair, and nails category.
I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.