Many of us have moles, tiny collections of cells with pigmentation that are highly visible on the skin. A mole may be flat or raised, and may be brown, red, or black. Most of the time, moles are no more than a cosmetic issue, and many people choose to remove certain spots for an improved appearance. Mole removal is a personal choice, but one that should be made carefully. This pertains not so much to whether or not a mole is removed, but how it is removed.
THE DANGERS OF DIY MOLE REMOVAL
Due to the ease in which information can be obtained in this age, mole removal can be made to sound far simpler than it is. Some companies manufacture home removal kits containing chemicals that essentially eat away unwanted tissue. Before applying the formulated skin cream, the “patient” must scratch the surface of the unwanted mole with a file of some type. The cream can then penetrate the mole. There are several problems with this DIY approach, which may lead to discomfort, scarring, or possibly the unwitting spread of cancer cells.
Discomfort may occur with the use of mole removal creams because such products are not formulated to be suitable for every skin type. There is no way to discern whether or not your skin type is suited to a mole removal cream until you try it, having a fifty/fifty chance that the skin will become irritated from home treatment. Mole removal creams also do not consider the variations of any given mole, such as size or texture.
Scarring is a possibility with DIY mole removal because there is a lack of precision in home removal kits and techniques. As a person seeks to improve the look of his or her skin by removing an unwanted mole, he or she may end up with the secondary problem of scarring if healthy skin is also removed along with the mole. Scarring from DIY mole removal can be significant enough to warrant corrective surgery.
Testing is an important step in mole removal because it can be difficult to determine, without the trained eye of an experienced dermatologist, whether a mole contains cancer cells. Removing a mole at home, there is no testing. Testing only takes place during professional mole removal with your dermatologist, giving you the most accuracy and safety.
If you are considering mole removal, we invite you to contact our office in Birmingham for your consultation with experienced dermatologist Dr. Corey Hartman or Dr. Rayna Dyck.