What causes moles?

Since I’ve been getting older, I’ve noticed more and more moles popping up on my body. Some look like tiny meatballs, lol. What causes this?

Grubs. Are you full of grubs?

I don’t know, but once when I was a kid, (4th grade IIRC,) I was at a swimming pool, and I saw what looked to me like a balled up earthworm on a lady’s shoulder. I got her attention, and said as quietly as I could, “Excuse me, you’ve got like a balled up worm on your shoulder or something!” She squinted at me, death in her eyes, and growled, “It’s a fucking mole.”

I felt really bad, but, eh, whaddayagonnado?


Ew, a lady swore at a little kid? I hope a balled-up earthworm ate her.

When I was a little kid my mom told me they were caused by not washing well enough.

I don’t know what causes moles, but I do know that what a lot of people think are moles are actually seborrheic keratoses. They are warty growths that appear stuck on the skin and come in a variety of lovely colors- black, grey, brown, and sometimes red. They tend to crop up after age 30, and they seem to be hereditary. They are completely benign and not caused by the sun.

Could that be what you have?

It’s possible, it’s on my back and I can’t really get close enough to it. Maybe I’ll take a pic and do a TMI post. :wink:

What causes moles? Well, you see, when a mommy mole and a daddy mole love each other…

Ironically, I saw a “new” mole about 2 days ago. So the timing of this is great.

Im 23 however.

As it is, Ive got enough moles to share.

According to the Mayo Clinics site moles are caused by "clusters of melanocytes ".
I read in another article that I can’t find now that most scientist agree on ultra-violet light as one of the factors that cause new mole growth.

Wikipedia on moles(skin markings). Wikipedia on birthmarks.

At the bottom of this page are contrasts between benign moles and melanomia. “Recognizing changes in your moles, by following this ABCD Chart, is crucial in detecting malignant melanoma, and other cancerous skin growths at its earliest stage of development.”

From here: “Moles are very common. Most people have between 10 and 40 of these brown, tan, or black areas on the skin. Moles can be flat or raised. They are usually round or oval and smaller than a pencil eraser. They can be present at birth or appear later, usually before age 40. Moles generally grow or change only slightly over a long period of time. They tend to fade away in older people.”

How about a slight hijack:

What evolutionary purpose do (melanocytic, skin) moles serve?