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After a summer of fun in the sun, you may notice that your kids have a few more moles than usual! A few skin differences are bound to pop up now and again, but when should parents be concerned about them?
Monitoring your child’s moles is important because melanomas can grow in or near them. When you notice any changes to their skin, like the appearance of new moles or a change in size/shape; that could be an early sign of something more serious, so have a chat with your dermatologist.
Moles are pigmented cells that appear during childhood, adolescence, and early adulthood. They can develop anywhere on the body; however, they will often get bigger with age or change in coloration over time. They can even sprout hair!
Many fair-skinned people will be more prone to developing moles and may need to keep a closer eye on them than other people, as their moles may also be more likely to develop into skin cancer.
When examining your child’s moles, there are a few signs you should look out for. If a new mole pops up, pay special attention to the size. If it’s smaller than a pencil eraser, you should be fine – but if it gets bigger than that, it could be a sign of something serious that needs examination.
Other signs of potentially malignant moles are asymmetrical shape, jagged edges, and uneven or strange color. Any of these signs are worth getting checked out!
If you’re a concerned parent, one of the best things you can do for your child is lead by example. Wear protective clothing while in the sun, and apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. Wear a hat during the brightest parts of the day, and make sure you and your child protect your eyes by wearing sunglasses.
Keep a careful eye on your child’s moles. If you’re concerned, take pictures of them and keep them on your phone to mark the changes from week to week. Finally, if you see anything irregular, don’t hesitate to contact your dermatologist!. If the mole starts hurting, is getting bigger, or bleeding, then it should be looked at immediately. Regardless of your concern, a dermatological examination will benefit both you and your child. If you’re looking for skilled experts who will put your child at ease, please schedule an examination with us today!
Sydney Karp, PA at Advanced Dermatology,PC talks about what she looks for in finding an irregular mole in the video below.