Moles are something that can appear anywhere on our bodies, and come in different shapes, sizes and colors. Some moles can be cause for concern and require a Dr. or a Dermatologist to take a look. Before you get all Google McDoctor and start panicking on me, let’s take a look at a few different growths and what they mean.
Who gets them:
Men and Women can get moles anywhere on their bodies, head to toe. Some can be hidden in between toes, and in hair, or behind ears. Some people are covered and they are clustered in groups all over the body while some people only have a few and are spread out throughout the body.
What do they look like:
Moles can be flat or raised, and have different edging on them. Mole are either black, or light or dark brown, Some may change color due to sun exposure or aging. Some moles may even have hair growing in them.
ABCDE, the alphabet of moles:
Most moles, and we’re talking a large majority are NOT cancerous. Moles that don’t change size, color or shape are most likely not cancerous. Moles that change shape, grow, change color, bleed, itch or become painful should be checked by a dermatologist or PCP. If you don’t visit a dermatologist or a Dr. once a year for a check up, you should have a buddy who can take pictures of your moles so that each year you can compare the pictures and see if they are looking the same, or if there are any new ones appearing.
The best way to monitor moles is to remember your ABCDE’s. When you notice any of these, it is a good idea to get checked out by a Dr. or Dermatologist:
- A – Asymmetry. If one side of the mole does not match the other side, it is asymmetrical.
- B – Border. The border or edges of the mole are ragged, blurred or irregular.
- C – Color. The color of the mole has changed, or is not the same throughout the mole, or has shades of tan, brown, black, blue, white or red.
- D – Diameter. The diameter of the mole is larger than a pencil eraser.
- E – Evolution. The size, color or shape of the mole have changed.
If you notice any of these, don’t panic, but do make an appt. to get them checked out. Your primary care physician can recommend further treatment if necessary.