Moles: What They Are and What to Do About Them

Illustration of a woman with a mole on her back.

Most people have at least a few moles on their bodies, even if they might not notice them. The vast majority of moles are harmless, and many may barely be noticeable. For some, they might blend in as almost darker-looking freckles.

Moles may grow or change or pop up later in life and, in some instances, they can be dangerous. Here’s what to know about them:

What They Are

Moles are a common skin growth that generally appear in the form of small brown spots. Most people have somewhere between 10 and 40 moles appear during childhood and adolescence. Moles can appear basically anywhere on your body and are usually less than a quarter inch in diameter. They tend to be oval or round, can be either smooth or wrinkled, flat or raised, and they may have a hair growing from them.

Signs of Danger

While most moles are benign, they do have the potential to be malignant, meaning they’re a sign of skin cancer. There are some easy ways to deduce if your mole could be cancerous. Is the shape asymmetrical, meaning one half is unlike the other? Is the border irregular or notched? Has the color changed over time or is the color uneven? Has the mole grown to larger than a quarter inch in diameter? Is it changing or evolving in any way? Has it started to itch or bleed more? Any of these are signs that your mole may be cancerous, and you should get it checked out.

Benign Moles

While most moles are benign, some of them may be unseemly to you. Perhaps you feel you have too many of them or that there are some that are in a spot you don’t want them. Perhaps you just don’t like the look of them. In that case, you still have the option of having them removed by a dermatologist.

If you have one or more moles that you don’t like the appearance of, you shouldn’t have to feel self-conscious. Instead, have it removed by Dr. Kirit Kothari. He can remove any and all skin lesions, benign or otherwise for patients in the areas of Allentown, Bethlehem, and East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania. Call (570) 420-6000 to schedule an appointment!

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