Why Does Hair on Moles Grow More Quickly?
Early colonial America and medieval Europe saw moles as a symbol of demonic possession (as was everything else). They were used by the ancient Greeks and Chinese as a means of determining a person's character or destiny. Marilyn Monroe, Goldie Hawn, Cindy Crawford, and Madonna are just some of the modern pop culture icons who have turned moles into desirable and even sought-after beauty marks. However, as anyone with a mole on their skin can attest, they have a special quality: A darker and coarser hair texture is often seen on those with darker skin tones.
What's going on? Why do moles produce hairs at a faster rate than other areas of the body? The truth is that science has no idea.
As a dermatologist based in Augusta, Georgia, Lauren Ploch tells mental floss, "The short answer is that we don't know why the hair is coarser in moles or why it may seem to grow faster," she says. "As with the development of moles, the regulation of hair growth remains a dermatologic mystery."
Nevus cells, a type of melanocyte found in moles, appear to have no effect on the structure of hair follicles when viewed under a microscope, according to Ploch.
A number of factors, including genetics, environment, hormones and signaling proteins, have been identified as contributing to the development of mole skin. According to Ploch, many of these elements (especially hormones and signaling proteins) also play a role in promoting hair growth. In other words, because of the mole's presence and the underlying causes, hair growth may be disrupted.
A local milieu of skin signaling molecules and hormones, she says, may be the cause of a darker, coarser hair within a mole, even though the mole itself may not play a direct role.
She explains that moles and hair share the same steroid hormone, androgen, which is responsible for the growth of facial and pubic hairs during puberty.
We still don't know everything about moles, but at least we have a better understanding of them than we did in the Middle Ages.
Are Hairy Moles Cancerous?
Even if you find your hairy mole unsightly, it can give you peace of mind knowing that you are less likely to develop skin cancer because of it.
As a result, moles that have hair growing out of them are generally considered to be cancer-free. In fact, this is the first time I've ever seen a mole with hair that was out of the ordinary for me.
Think about it like this: Hair growth is a normal process, but it does not occur in cancer patients.
As a result, hair would grow through a mole if it were situated above a healthy hair follicle.
It's possible, however, that the follicle could be damaged by a developing skin cancer, which would prevent the hair from growing.
There is no guarantee, however.
An already existing mole that undergoes cancerous changes can develop into melanoma, the most worrisome and potentially lethal form of skin cancer.
If you have a mole with hair protruding from it, you should be aware that it could turn cancerous. The hair would then cease to grow as a result of this scenario.
Even though this is a possibility, you shouldn't sweat it too much. Melanoma is extremely unlikely to develop in moles that have a tendency to grow hair.
Any mole or mark on the skin you're concerned about should be reported to a doctor.
Early detection of melanoma is critical, as the disease can be fatal if discovered at a later stage.