Most people have moles and usually they’re nothing to worry about. Moles are small, coloured spots on the skin.
Most harmless moles can…
- Be round or oval-shaped with a smoothed edge
- Be flat or raised and may feel smooth or rough
- Have hair growing from them
So how do you tell when a mole could be serious?
Some moles can be a sign of melanoma – a type of skin cancer. Signs of melanoma generally include:
- A mole that has changed colour or has more than two colours
- A mole with uneven borders
- A mole that is bleeding, itching, crusting or raised
If you are ever unsure of whether your mole is something to worry about then don’t hesitate. Book an appointment with a GP or a mole check appointment with one of our private dermatologists who can provide their expert opinion.
What happens if my GP thinks it’s melanoma?
If your GP thinks it’s melanoma you will be referred to a specialist dermatologist and should have an appointment within two weeks.
How do you treat melanoma?
The main treatment for melanoma is surgery to remove the mole.
How can I prevent cancerous moles?
UV light from the sun can increase the chances of a mole becoming cancerous. If you have lots of moles, you need to be extra careful in the sun and it’s important to check your moles regularly for any changes.
There are some things you can do to protect your moles from sun damage, especially during hot weather.
To prevent the risk of moles turning cancerous you should…
- Stay in the shade between 11am and 3pm, when sunlight is strongest
- Cover skin with clothes – wear a hat and sunglasses if you have moles on your face
- Regularly apply a high-factor sunscreen (minimum SPF30) and apply it again after you have been swimming
You should never use sunlamps or sunbeds as they use UV lights.
At Pall Mall, we offer a fully private assessment of any moles with a Dermatologist. This can help to examine single or multiple concerns whether you are looking for peace of mind or a better cosmetic appearance.