Why do Moles Itch? Is It a Sign of Skin Cancer?

Why do Moles Itch? Is It a Sign of Skin Cancer?

The average person will have somewhere between 10 and 40 moles so it is quite inevitable that at one time or another they will suffer from an itchy mole; very often the mole will get unknowingly scratched and this is where potential issues can arise.

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If the scratching is done of a consistent basis then the mole may well turn malignant and this is referred to as a melanoma and is one of the most common causes of skin cancer; it accounts for the deaths of many thousands of people each and every year.

When an itchy mole is found it is important to have it checked out as soon as possible, sometimes this process might involve taking a sample of the surrounding tissue area to ensure that the mole is still normal. Visit our article to learn common signs of cancerous moles.

Why do Moles Itch?

There are a number of potential reasons as to why a non-cancerous mole might itch, some of which can be found below:

  • itchingIrritation that is caused by UV rays
  • Moles that are scratched or irritated during shaving
  • Increased levels of alcohol consumption
  • Highly concentrated chemical cosmetics

Without question the biggest single reason for a skin mole to itch is from the irritation that is caused by UV rays, this is of course direct sunlight and also from tanning or sun beds.

If you have moles then it is sensible to try to protect them from these environments as much as possible, this will mean things like:

  • Avoid direct exposure to the sun
  • Wear shirts with sleeves
  • Wear a sunhat
  • Always use protective sun creams
  • Re-apply sun cream every 2-3 hours and after swimming

It is always worth remembering that the sun is at its hottest and most dangerous between the hours of 10am and 3pm, so if you can avoid having to go out during these times then the better it will be.

Another factor that will be worth considering is that even on overcast days the suns powerful rays can still penetrate the cloud cover; something like 80% of the suns UV A rays and 50% of the suns UV B rays still reach us here on earth.

Is an Itchy Mole Dangerous?

Failure to react to an itchy mole can of course be dangerous, and in many cases it is can be fatal. Such is the mortality rate of melanomas; this is why it is vital that intervention at the earliest possible stage is carried out.

When a malignant mole is treated and removed early the chances of the cancerous cells having spread to other body areas is extremely low. That is why it is very important to have your mole checked if you notice at least one sign of skin cancer.

Very often a dermatologist or doctor will be able to advise on the safe removal of an itchy mole, the options that are generally available include:

  • Laser treatment
  • Cauterization
  • Surgery
  • Freezing

Once the treatment has been carried out it is important to take care for the wound area, this is an on-going process that will help it to heal properly.

Normally it will be advised that the area should be cleaned twice per day, using hydrogen peroxide or antibacterial soap along with fresh clean water, after this stage an antibacterial ointment should be applied to your wound, along with a sterile bandage. This will prevent fresh infection from setting in and also help the wound to heal much quicker.

If there is a level of pain or discomfort after the procedure to remove your itchy mole then it is possible to take a general pain reliever, ibuprofen or paracetamol is normally sufficient to alleviate the discomfort.

When the wound is going through its healing process it might well start to itch, this is perfectly normal; however, care should always be taken to avoid scratching the area as further damage can occur.