A true beauty mark is with us since birth, but as we age we can develop marks and spots on our body that could mean anything or nothing. There is an old wives tale that suggests that raised moles are the ones to worry about. Well according to New York-based dermatologist, Neal Schultz, this is just that, a tale. According to Dr. Schultz,”It’s usually the flat moles that get into trouble. Raised moles are intradermal moles, or compound moles, and they have a much lower rate of malignant degeneration. Flat moles are where most of the cases of melanoma come from.”
Is Your Mole Healthy?
Some signs to pay attention to are number one, symmetry. A healthy mole will be shaped in a way that if cut in half they would be equal and mirror each other. Oddly and awkwardly shaped moles are ones you should definitely point out to your physician. And according to Dr. Scultz you can take this symmetry test even further. He suggests that “if you draw a line down the middle of your body, from your chin down through your groin, and you have two moles that are a mirror of each other, meaning roughly the same distance from that middle line and approximately the same level up and down, there is a good chance they are precancerous.”
Another thing to pay attention to is change. A healthy mole will remain the same forever. Even if you cut or agitate it by mistake, it should heal and go back to the exact same shape/color that it was to begin with. If you notice that a mole is changing over time, it may be worth showing your doctor.
It is important that you stay aware of your skin’s health. I mean, it is the largest organ we have. Making sure to pay attention to anything that seems off or different about your skin is helpful for you to stay on top of your health. If you really want to be an Allstar see a dermatologist once a year just as you would your family doctor for a physical. It can’t hurt to know that you are in the clear! Most issues caught early can be resolved, so do your best to stay in the know about your health!