Mole: Beauty Mark or Nuisance
The mole is known medically as nevi. This is a cluster or clusters of pigmented cells often appearing as small, dark brown spots. However, they can also come in differing colours and virtually appear anywhere in the body. Specific areas of development include the torso, the face, the arms and the legs. The degree of darkness and the number of nevi developing depends on age and sun exposure. There are some that disappear as one grows older.
Color varieties include brown, blue, flesh-coloured, or black spots and it is shaped from ovals to round. It is harmless though but may become cancerous in rare cases. But not all melanomas (skin cancer) develop from pre-existing moles. They may begin developing near one or other dark spots on the skin. You need to first familiarize yourself with the moles present on your body. Any changes on the appearance of these moles over the course of your life can be an indication of cancer development. Melanomas, however, can develop even with normal pigmentation. But moles larger than 8 inches in diameter and have had been present since birth are likely to develop skin cancer.
Aside from the aforementioned color and further development of moles, a mole varies also in size. It can grow as small as a pinhead, or even large enough to cover an entire limb. Adolescents with moles may have them darker and even larger. Pregnant women, on the other hand, may develop numerous darker moles on the course of their pregnancy. Its appearance can also differ. It can be seen as smooth or wrinkled, flat or raised. It may also start out as flat but gradually becomes slightly raised and lighter in color. Others become raised enough with a development of a stalk but eventually rubbed off. Still others just simply disappear.
The mole can be removed by shaving or by incision. It can also be covered with makeup for those on a really tight budget. But its growth and presence cannot be prevented. To be aware of any growing melanomas or skin cancers, the A-B-C-D skin self-examination guide is useful. These are:
- A – asymmetrical shape where one has to look for irregular shapes like two very different-looking halves
- B – irregular border where characteristics of melanomas include moles with irregular, notched or scalloped borders
- C – changes in color may include many colours or uneven distribution of colours
- D – diameter of growths reaching larger than about ? inch or 6 millimetres
Moles have actually been a rave over the centuries albeit cancer was not yet considered to be related to them. They have been intentionally created with a makeup pencil and placed on the face as beauty marks since the 18th century. They were even shaped into hearts during that time. In the 20th century, Hollywood stars like Marilyn Monroe’s and Cindy Crawford’s moles were becoming the rave.
With facts presented, is mole a nuisance or a beauty mark to be raved on? You be the judge.