Do you know how to check your moles?
Mole checks and skin cancer screening saves lives.
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the UK, with over 400 people being diagnosed every day. Melanoma skin cancer is on the rise, with incidence rates increasing by 45% in the UK in the last decade, despite the warnings of the dangerous effects of sun exposure. Early detection of skin cancer, through examination and regular monitoring of moles, saves lives and if caught and treated early enough there is a 100% chance of survival. However, if left to develop and evolve, melanoma can become fatal. Skin cancer is more often seen rather than felt which is why we strongly recommend checking your moles regularly.
It is a good idea to check your moles once a month, especially if you have lots of moles or freckles (particularly if some are large), have fair hair or skin, use sunbeds or have a family history of skin cancer.
When checking your moles, it is a good idea to use both a full length and a hand held mirror so you are able to check your body all over. Stand in a well lit room and ask a family member or your partner to help you check the hard to reach areas. Don’t forget to check less obvious places such as your scalp, the soles of your feet and in between your fingers and toes.
When checking your body for moles, you are looking for any changes to the size, colour of shape. You are also looking for itching, bleeding or crusting of moles which are signs you need to book an appointment to get your moles checked by a consultant dermatologist. When checking for moles, know your ABCDEs and get your moles professional checked if:
A Asymmetry – one half doesn’t match the other half
B Borders – the mole has uneven borders
C Colour – there is a variety of colours in the mole (brown, tan or black)
D Diameter – the mole grows larger than a pencil eraser (¼ inch)
E Evolution – the mole evolves in size, shape, colour, elevation or there is a new characteristic
If you have checked your moles and still aren’t sure if they need checking by a consultant dermatologist, take our interactive quiz to see if your moles are likely to be safe or need to be checked by an expert. If you have any doubts or concerns about your moles, book an appointment to get them checked. If caught and treated early, there is a 100% chance of survival.
We work with leading experts in the field of dermatology to ensure you have the best experience and treatment. Stratum Dermatology Clinics are regulated by the Care Quality Commission, are part of the British Association of Dermatologists and are top rated by patients on Doctify and Trustpilot. Both Stratum Dermatology Clinics and the consultants who work here are recognised by the main healthcare insurance providers.