ABC’s of Mole Checks
Did you know that skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States?
An estimated one in five people will be diagnosed with skin cancer by the time they are 70. In fact, more than one million people in the U.S. are living with melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer. According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association (AADA) an estimated 7,180 people will die from it in 2021 alone.
The notoriety of skin cancer, Melanoma specifically, precedes itself. It’s important to take preventable measures seriously including: putting on sunscreen daily, wearing hats and protective clothing, and consistently showing up for your annual skin exam.
When in doubt, check it out!
According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, ninety-nine percent of all skin cancer cases are curable if they are diagnosed and treated early enough. Skin exams are your best line of defense in detecting cancer before it spreads or becomes more difficult to treat.
Did you know that about half of all melanomas are self-detected? This is why performing monthly self checks is so important in helping you keep an eye on and identify any changes in mole color, size, and diameter. Once you notice a change in mole condition, schedule an appointment with your doctor or dermatologist for an official diagnosis.
How to Identify an Atypical Mole Using the ABCDE Warning Signs?
It is important to know what you’re looking for when performing self exams. Becoming familiar with the ABCDE’s of atypical moles is the first step in helping you identify any changes or causes for concern.
Let’s look at the Skin Cancer Foundations breakdown of the ABCDE Warning Signs below:
- A is for Asymmetry. Most melanomas are asymmetrical. If you draw a line through the middle of the lesion, the two halves don’t match, so it looks different from a round to oval and symmetrical common mole.
- B is for Border. Borders tend to be uneven and may have scalloped or notched edges, while common moles tend to have more smoother, more even borders.
- C is for Color. Multiple colors are a warning sign. While benign moles are usually a single shade of brown, a melanoma may have different shades of brown, tan or black. As it grows, the colors red, white or blue may also appear.
- D is for Diameter and Dark. While it’s ideal to detect a melanoma when it’s small, it is a warning sign if a lesion is the size of a pencil eraser (about 6 mm, or ¼ inch in diameter) or larger. Some experts say it is also important to look for any lesion, no matter what size, that is darker than others. Rare, amelanotic melanomas are colorless.
- E is for Evolving. Any change in size, shape, color or elevation of a spot on your skin, or any new symptom in it, such as bleeding, itching or crusting, may be a warning sign to see your doctor.
Make Your Appointment!
Melanoma is highly treatable when detected early. Creating a daily skin check routine is essential for early detection and prevention. Habit Camera makes it easy to keep track of any changes in skin conditions, including moles/skin in hard to see places.
Schedule an appointment with a dermatologist for a professional skin check at least once a year or if you notice any changes in your skin or moles.
About Habit Camera
Habit Camera is an affordable, ergonomic, and wireless camera built for skin inspection in modern telehealth. High quality, iOS, and Android compatible, Habit Camera is accessible to everyone, regardless of physical conditions, making it easier to make skin inspection a habit.
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