Skin is the largest part of our body. It covers us from head to toe, keeps our insides inside and protects us from the elements. But our skin leads a very curious life. As we age and grow, things change. For instance, acne, scars and moles occur. Of course, everyone is different and some of us are more prone to things than others, but some of the things that our skin presents us with can raise a lot of questions. Is this itchy patch ringworm or just dry skin? Can I do anything about this unrelenting acne? Why are my cheeks always so red? Do I need to get this mole checked out? When it comes to moles the answer isn’t always a simple one. There are lots of variations to moles, and generally they’re nothing to worry about. But there are some signs that a mole may need a dermatologist’s attention.

Growing Moles

Moles are typically a benign phenomena. When your moles are fairly uniform and a similar shape, color and size there’s generally nothing to worry about. But when a mole starts to grow, it may be a sign that something deeper is going on. If you have a mole that is starting to become asymmetric, spreading beyond its border or becoming more elevated, it would be in your best interest to get it looked at. A skilled dermatologist Norman OK can identify a growing mole that is problematic. Typically if a mole is growing with your skin and isn’t going beyond its borders or becoming asymmetrical, there’s nothing to worry about.

Color Changing Moles

A mole that is changing colors is another red flag. Bear in mind that as we age, moles can become lighter in color, raise up or become flesh colored. This is usually due to sun exposure, exfoliation or certain types of medications. But when a mole has multiple colors in it or is spontaneously bleeding, there is cause for concern. If you’re unsure of whether something odd is happening with your moles, please call a doctor.

Skin Cancer

Understand that moles and skin cancer are not one in the same. The term “mole” is used for an array of lumps and spots on the human body. And that the peculiar signals that moles give do not apply to some of the more common non-melanoma skin cancer. For instance, basal cell carcinoma often presents as a skin rash that doesn’t go away with typical treatments or a sore that isn’t quite healing. Most people don’t get new moles after the age of 50, so if you’re noticing new moles after 50, be vigilant in doing body checks.

If you don’t have any concerning moles, great! But if you do have some that worry you, are at risk for skin cancer, or you’ve noticed a weird mole that is very different from the ones you already have, don’t waste any time scheduling an appointment with your healthcare provider. It’s best to get them checked right away, as early detection usually has better patient results.