Everybody has moles; on average, most people have up to sixty moles on their body at any given time. However, for some people, a not only is a mole a blight on their appearance, it could very well be a catalyst for future high-risk skin disorders, including cancer. Having a mole on your body isn’t necessarily something to be alarmed about, but for those who are suffering from unsightly moles, it’s normal to want to remove in the privacy of one’s own home. If you have moles on your neck and you’re looking for proven methods to remove them both safely and effectively, then please keep reading.
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What Causes Moles on the Neck?
Having moles on your neck is quite common. Moles (“nevus”) are a cluster of pigment cells that gather in one set location on the body.
The location of the mole on your skin is due to random genetics; you’re equally likely to develop a mole on your neck as you are on your arm, back or leg.
It’s important to distinguish between benign moles and other, possibly dangerous, skin conditions:
- Normal Moles: Normal, healthy moles are generally quite small (5mm or less), round or oval with smooth edges, and either pink, tan or brown in color.
- Atypical Moles: Also known as “dysplastic nevi”, these moles may be larger than 5mm with somewhat irregular borders and textures and are usually tan or brown.
- Skin Tags: These are also benign and are a flap of skin that hangs in a bulb from the body. They are generally associated with middle age, pregnancy, and weight gain.
- Cherry Angioma: These moles are red in color due to the large number of blood vessels present inside them. They are usually found on people over the age of 30.
- Seborrheic Keratoses: Warty and crusty in appearance, these usually show up on the head, chest, or back of older adults. Unlike moles, they arise from keratinocytes, not melanocytes.
Monitor your moles closely for any changes.
If a mole suddenly changes color (turns black or red, for instance), start to itch or become swollen, changes in shape or size, or starts to bleed, consult your dermatologist immediately. These changes may be indicative of melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer.
Also known as compound moles, raised moles can be quite unattractive. Hairs may sprout from these nevi, contributing to their unsightliness.
While generally benign, they can easily become inflamed. To minimize irritation, you can:
- Wear looser clothing.
- Avoid collars that can rub or chafe the mole.
- Place a bandage over the mole.
- Stick with natural fiber clothes, like cotton or linen, to help the area breathe.
If a mole starts out flat and suddenly becomes raised, then consult your doctor. Any changes to the appearance of moles may indicate malignancy. You can find more raised mole information here.
Moles should not be painful to the touch. If your mole is starting to hurt, then you should consult your physician.
While the pain radiating from your mole may be due to benign reasons (such as irritation from shaving or clothing), you should always seek medical intervention. A painful mole may be a sign of skin cancer.
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer, with 1 in 5 men and 1 in 6 women developing it during their lifetime. Melanoma accounts for only 1% of all skin cancers but leads to over 75% of all skin cancer deaths. 10,000 people will die this year from it. If caught early, however, melanoma has between a 92%-99% 5-year survival rate.
Do not take chances with your health. While a trip to the doctor may seem dramatic and excessive, losing your life to cancer is far worse. For more painful mole facts, click here.
What if My Mole is Growing?
Just like pain, growth is a dangerous sign. Moles should not grow or change in appearance in any way, shape, or form.
Remember your ABCDEs to help prevent deadly skin cancer:
- Asymmetry: one side of the mole should be a mirror image of the other.
- Borders: the edges should be even and smooth, not jagged or rough.
- Color: should be uniformly tan or brown, and not change or have variation.
- Diameter: moles should be smaller than 1/2 inch, and not grow or change in size.
- Evolution: they should not change in appearance at all from before.
Being mindful to any changes in your moles, and reporting those changes to your dermatologist, could save your life.
What do Moles on My Neck Mean?
Moles can appear on any part of the body. They can be hidden under your hair, scattered across your back, or you could have an enormous one right on the tip of your nose.
The location of your mole does not necessarily indicate a higher or lower propensity for risk for cancer, and oftentimes malignant moles can even appear in areas that aren’t exposed to sunshine.
One branch of astrology believes that mole placement plays a large role in one’s destiny. Some cultures, namely Chinese and Indian, practice a form of the zodiac called “moleosophy”.
According to moleosophy, a mole:
- On the cheek means that the person is very serious and studious and avoids material goods.
- On the lip means that the person will always be striving to do better in life.
- On the neckmay mean either a life of luxury or, if it’s found on the back of the neck, the person wishes to lead a simple life.
- On the nose means that the person is a true and sincere friend.
- On the ear means they are lucky in life!
Many doctors, however, denounce moleosophy as pseudoscience and maintain that the location of a nevus on a person’s body has little to no bearing on their personality.
Over time, some people may find that having a mole on their neck is an unwanted burden. They may grow tired of having to conceal it, or it catching on their razor blade or on their clothes.
Removing moles can be done in an outpatient setting at a dermatologist’s office. Conversely, some people prefer to do it in the comfort of their own home. This can be a safe and effective way to remove moles.
If removed in a medical clinic, a doctor can send a sample out to a laboratory for a biopsy to determine if the mole is cancerous. To read more about signs of melanoma, click here.
For some, the expense of taking time off work, driving down to a dermatologist, and having a mole surgically removed is simply too much effort.
If your mole isn’t exhibiting any signs of atypia, then you may be able to remove them at home. Be advised that removing them at home, while regarded generally as safe, does come with some risks, including scarring and infection.
Using mole removal creams is not advised; they can burn your skin, leaving a pitted scar. Additionally, cutting it off (with a blade or scalpel) is also too dangerous to do at home due to the risk of scarring or infection (from improperly sanitized tools or post-removal treatment).
However, you can rely on these safe and proven methods to thoroughly remove your moles:
- Iodine: This treatment can cause the mole to flake and peel off. Coat the surrounding area with petroleum jelly to avoid chemical burns.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: Apply apple cider vinegar to a cotton ball, then affix to your mole using surgical tape. Learn more about apple cider vinegar mole removal.
- Castor Oil and Baking Soda: The baking soda acts as a gentle abrasive, eroding away the mole while the castor oil keeps the skin supple. Apply at night and cover with a bandage. There’s more information in this article about castor oil for mole removal.
- Vitamin C and Turmeric: Make a paste of both granulated Vitamin C and turmeric. Vitamin C will dissolve the mole, while the turmeric is anti-inflammatory.
- Tea Tree Oil (TTO): Apply a diluted drop to skin nightly. The astringent properties of the TTO will break down the mole.
If you use these methods on your mole, you should expect gradual but permanent and gentle results. You can find more information about mole removal at home here.
3 Easy Ways, According to Experts
The safest and easiest ways to remove moles is in a clinical setting. Using only sterile equipment and medical methods, you’ll be able to ensure that the mole will not return and – if it is a malignant mole – that you’ll be able to receive proper treatment for it.
- Surgery: Surgical mole removal includes punch biopsy (for slightly raised moles), excisional surgery (for possible melanomas) and shave excision (for raised moles). Please see detailed descriptions here.
- Cryotherapy: The doctor freezes the mole off using liquid nitrogen. Further details can be found here.
- Laser Removal: Using high-power pulsating beams, this zaps the surface of the skin, cauterizing the mole. For more information click here.
Regardless of the type of mole removal that you elect to employ, you can expect to get safe and permanent results if you utilize these recommended methods.
Moles certainly may negatively impact your life, whether they turn malignant or they affect your quality of life due to the shame and embarrassment that you experience from having them.
You deserve to feel confident in your own skin, and mole removal can give you the self-assurance you seek.
You can find further details of Types of moles here.