More information about moles

Moles are an especially important condition to assess when performing skin checks. Moles can be present when a person is born or they can develop over time. Moles can develop in adulthood due to sun exposure, aging, and other factors. 

Moles typically appear as brown but can also present in a variety of other colors. Moles can also appear as flesh-colored, pink, and red. Most moles are benign, but some may indicate more serious conditions such as melanoma (cancerous cells). Any moles that appear suddenly or change shape should be examined by a medical professional as soon as possible.

Certain changes or visual identifiers of a mole to keep an eye out for:

  • Asymmetry of the mole
  • Having more than 50 moles on the body
  • Irregular or poorly defined border of the mole
  • Changes to shape or color of existing mole
  • More than 6mm large in diameter
  • Brand new moles appearing
  • Moles that are itchy, bleed, or look infected

To prevent dark spots and moles caused by sun exposure, wear a strong SPF (at least SPF30) every day on the face and body and cover the exposed skin as much as possible when out in the sun. 

Related skin conditions

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