Leucoderma is a chronic disorder of the skin where the skin stops producing pigments that color the skin. As a result white patches appear randomly at different locations on the skin. These patches are white in color and as time passes may increase in number and size. Leucoderma is not a medical term. It is only a substitute name for vitiligo. Vitiligo is a more common name for this disease in the west where as in Asia leucoderma is used more.
The Skin is colored in different shades of brown due to a pigment called melanin.Special cells called melanocytes are responsible for the production of melanin. Sometimes, for reasons dubious, the melanocytes stop producing melanin which results in white skin patches.
Treatments: Its very hard to find a proper cure for a disease, the reason to which is still unknown. There are many treatmets suggested for leucoderma but none of them are proven 100% successful. Using colored creams and tanning creams to hide the patches of skin is a more common method. This hides the patches but requires a lot of time to apply the creams and the drawback is it doesnt prevent more spots from appearing.
Steroid creams are also very commonly used. Steroid affects the immune system of the body by weakening it. So when a steroid cream is applied to the skin, the antibodies in the skin are weakened and they stop attacking the melanocytes and melanin production is resumed. It is to be noted that this treatment does not guarantee that the patches will not appear again.
Also, steroid creams can not be used continuously for as long as one wishes to use them. Steroids have serious side-affects which include permanent thinning of the skin and appearance of stretch marks on area of application, which are also permanent. Steroid creams also make the skin less resistant to infections.
Home remedies for Leucoderma:
• Leucoderma treatment using Red Clay Another useful remedy for leucoderma is red clay found by the river side or on hill slopes. The clay should be mixed in ginger juice in a ratio of 1:1, and applied over the white spots once a day. The copper contained in the clay seems to bring back skin pigmentation. Ginger juice also serves as a mild stimulant, facilitating increased blood flow to the spots. Drinking water kept overnight in a copper vessel will also help.
• Turmeric is also very effective in healing the Leucoderma. Add about 500 grams of turmeric in eight liters of water and soak it for some time. Then keep this turmeric solution for boiling and boil it for long time. Boil it till the time it reduces to one liter of water solution. Allow it to cool and strain it. Then add half-liter mustard oil in this solution and apply this mixture over the affected body parts. Applying this mixture twice in a day over the patches will reduce the patches in about three months.
• Collect seeds of radish and grind them to make fine powder. Add some vinegar to this powder and make fine paste from these two. Apply this paste over the skin patches and allow it to dry. Then wash it off. Do this regularly till the patches completely disappear.
• Drinking water stored in a copper vessel is also very effective method of treating Leucoderma. For this store drinking water in a copper vessel and keep it overnight. Next day drink this water whenever you are thirsty. You can safely use this method throughout your life. This water will also be beneficial in giving you overall good health.
• Add 100 grams of alfalfa in 100 grams of cucumber juice and drink this mixture twice in a day, preferably once in the early morning and again in the night. This is believed to be one of the very effective home remedies for Leucoderma.
• Drinking one glass of neem juice on a daily basis will give relief form the white patches.
• Crush some ginger leaves and apply the juices over the white patches. This will reduce the white patches and make them disappear.
• The best known remedy for Leucoderma is usage of seeds of psoralea. In Ayurveda, this is termed as Babchi. These seeds are to be steeped in the juice of ginger for about three days. The water is to be changed everyday. These seeds are then rubbed with hands to remove the husks. Let them dry and then powder them. About 1 gm of powder is to be taken with fresh milk for about a month. You can also apply paste made out if seeds on the white patches. This is one of the simple home remedies for leucoderma
• One should avoid junk food, packed food and canned food. This may contain the preservatives which may worsen the case of Leucoderma.
• Try to restrict sour tested food and salty food in diet. Salt and sour testing like lemon may worsen the case of Leucoderma.