Sometimes it can be difficult identifying whether one of your moles is looking suspicious. A mole you have lived with long term- even your entire life- may seem completely harmless but recently turned cancerous. Unfortunately skin cancer moles are not always obvious, but there are certain symptoms to look out for that will alert you when something may not be right with your mole. Knowing these symptoms is the best method to staying one step ahead, so if you do notice any of them you can arrange to see a specialist through a MoleSafe Skin Surveillance Program appointment ASAP.
Serious Changes To Pay Attention To
If your mole changes color that is a serious sign that something is wrong (although it may not be a cancer related problem.) If you notice your mole has changed shades, lighter or darker, or has changed colors completely or only in parts, you should have it checked immediately.
Another common indicator of cancerous moles is changes in size. Cancerous moles typically grow unevenly forming strange shapes. They may grow on only one side, for example. Moles growing larger or smaller are also something to pay attention to.
The feeling of a mole is something that can warn you of a problem. If one of your moles suddenly becomes itchy you should have it checked. Make sure you resist the urge to scratch an itchy mole so you do not make the problem worse, and see a specialist to have the mole assessed quickly. Another dangerous sign of a cancerous mole is if the mole is asymmetric or has uneven edges. A regular growth will usually be smooth to the touch and hardly noticeable when you run your fingers over it. If a mole is cancerous it will often be raised, rough or bumpy.
If you notice your mole has become flaky, with dry or scaly skin newly covering it, you should have it checked by a specialist. Cancerous growths can also become harder. When you touch your mole you will be able to tell whether it feels a lot more firm than before. If your mole looks or feels lumpy you should have it checked. Lumps can be small and still dangerous.
It is typical for cancerous moles to ooze or bleed at certain points. This clear symptom is usually the most motivating for patients to seek specialist help. If your mole is oozing or bleeding you should contact your dermatologist or book a MoleSafe Skin Surveillance Program appointment immediately.
What You Can Do
1 in 5 people will get skin cancer in their lifetime. Do not wait for signs and symptoms to appear first. Stay ahead of serious problems by getting regular skin exams. MoleSafe patients are entitled to free spot check appointments after their initial Total Body Photography MoleSafe scan. If you think you have a suspicious looking mole, do not hesitate to make an appointment.
If you are unsure about your personal level of skin cancer risk, take our quick and free Risk Quiz now to find out.