When the sun is out, the skin is definitely in and having healthy skin is at an advantage. Aside from freckles, moles are the collective skin marks that most people have; others find it unique and cute, and there are instances it can be a cause of worry. But what are moles?
Moles are concentrations of pigment-producing cells (know as melanocytes) in your skin. Typically, people born with light skin is highly likely to have more moles.
It usually differs in size and colour (it ranges from pink to dark brown or black) as you grow, new moles often appear at times when your hormone level change (for women) such as during pregnancy.
Nearly all moles are benign (noncancerous); however, new moles in an adult can be more likely. So, how can you tell when a mole needs checking out?
Firstly, you have to be aware of the types of moles.
Congenital moles, these moles are called birthmarks and can hugely differ in size, shape, and colour.
Then, of course, the Acquired moles (also called common moles), are moles that appear on your skin after you are born. They can appear anywhere, and most likely shaped as round, oval, or dome-shaped. It may also have hair in the middle! Most people with fair skin usually have between 10 to 40 of these moles.
The following ABCDE system can aid you in checking a normal mole from one that could potentially be a melanoma. Examine yourself and your family at least once a year and go to the doctor right away should you see anything out of the ordinary.
Asymmetry – Melanoma lesions are generally asymmetrical, while benign moles are typically round and symmetrical.
Border – Melanoma lesions constantly have uneven or irregular borders (for example, jagged or rough edges), and benign moles have smooth, even borders.
Colour – Melanoma lesions, in many instances, contain multiple shades of brown or black, in contrast to benign moles that are usually a single shade of brown.
Diameter – Early melanoma lesions are often more than 6mm in diameter; on the other hand, benign moles are usually less than 6mm in diameter.
Elevations or Enlargement – Be vigilant of moles that seem much bigger or more raised.
Some melanomas do not conform to the A-B-C-D-E criteria, so a Doctor/Dermatologist should examine any suspicious ones.
Prevent skin damage with the use of a broad-spectrum sunscreen at all times, and as an added boost, you can include a collagen supplement in your dietary routine. It may help increase collagen production that can assist in skin regeneration, hydration, and elasticity.
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