Horton didn’t confirm or deny that the mole was malignant, but the bandages in his Instagram photo indicate that it was surgically removed – a telling sign that something wasn’t right.
He was smart to take action. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in Australia, and melanoma – which often looks like moles or develops from moles – is the deadliest skin cancer.
If you’ve had more than five sunburns by age 20, your melanoma risk skyrockets by 80 per cent, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.
That risk is all the more reason to keep up with your annual skin screening. But it’s also smart to be able to spot warning signs on your own. Here are tips to help you identify trouble:
- Use the ABCDE trick. If your mole is Asymmetrical, has irregular Borders, contains more than one Color, has a Diameter bigger than the size of a pencil eraser, or Evolves and changes over time, schedule an appointment, stat.
- You stop growing new moles after your mid 30s. If you see a fresh spot after that, point it out to your doctor.
- If a mole starts to itch, bleed, or hurt, that’s a big red flag.Healthy moles shouldn’t cause you any pain.
- Pay particular attention to color. Red, translucent, pearly, or black spots warrant a closer look by your doctor.