An important part of being SunAWARE is knowing how to routinely check your skin for changes.
Often these changes are discovered in moles or freckles and require tests by a dermatologist to determine what if any treatment is necessary. DO NOT REMOVE MOLES YOURSELF. Check the size and color against the charts provided by the American Academy of Dermatology, know the ABCDE’s of moles, keep an on-going record of any changes including new moles or freckles and tell your doctor about any suspicious change. Again, DO NOT REMOVE MOLES YOURSELF.
Beyond the risk of infection and severe scarring, removing a mole yourself could put your life at risk. “If someone comes to see me when they’ve already removed the mole, they’ve essentially disposed of the evidence,” dermatologist Dr. Manu Mehra told the Daily Mail in an interview that is well worth reading. “There’s absolutely no way of telling whether the mole was dangerous or benign. In a worst-case scenario, it is possible that a cancer could metastasize, creating a terminal secondary tumor that could have been avoided if the initial cancer had been identified and treated,” he added.
There are mole removal kits and creams on the market. Please do not be tempted to use them. Ask your dermatologist before you do anything that will cause a mole to change. DO NOT REMOVE MOLES YOURSELF.
For a step by step guide to checking your skin, go the Melanoma International Foundation.
SunAWARE, simple steps for prevention and detection of skin caners.