Most people have moles, but that doesn’t mean everyone is thrilled to have them. Depending on its size and location, you may find your mole more tiresome than anything else. Fortunately, there are treatments that can help remove moles and allow you to achieve your appearance goals. At Franklin Skin and Laser in Franklin, TN, we are proud to offer our patients laser mole removal with medical-grade laser treatments.
How Much Does It Cost to Remove a Mole With a Laser?
There is no standard price for laser mole removal, but most people can expect to pay between $150 to $1500 to remove moles. While this may seem like a steep price curve, it must be noted that the higher costs are related to the removal of multiple moles rather than a single mole. For most people, laser mole removal treatments are quite affordable.
Will Insurance Cover Your Treatment?
It depends. If your desire to remove a mole is purely cosmetic because there isn’t anything wrong or dangerous about the mole you want to remove, then your insurance will likely not cover your treatment and you will have to pay out-of-pocket. However, if your mole is proven to be cancerous or poses a risk of becoming cancerous, then your insurance probably will cover your treatment. Check with your health insurance provider to learn more.
What Factors Determine the Price of Laser Mole Removal?
Part of the reason why the price of laser mole removal varies so much is the fact that no two moles are the same. There are many different factors that will determine the price you can expect to pay for laser treatments. Some of these factors include:
Moles have a great variation in their sizes. While some moles are as small as a freckle or only 1 or 2 millimeters in diameter, there are also larger moles about the size of a pencil eraser or bigger. The size of your mole will dictate how much laser attention needs to be focused on your treatment site to remove the mole from your skin.
The number of moles you have will also determine the price of your removal treatment. Some moles can form in clusters, while others are dotted over the face and body several inches apart, and others still can occur as solo blemishes. The number of moles you intend to remove will factor into the overall price of your treatment because the more moles you have, the longer your overall treatment appointment will be.
The location of your mole may also factor into the price of your treatment. Moles can form on virtually every area of the body, including the soles of the feet. Because some moles are harder to get to or form on more sensitive skin, laser removal treatments might be a necessity instead of other treatment options, such as excision. The location of your mole will likely determine the type of laser that can be used for your treatment.
Finally, the method of your mole removal will be a huge factor in your price. Depending on the size and depth of color your mole has, you may only have the choice of using specific high-powered medical-grade lasers for your treatment instead of cosmetic lasers, which are often slightly less expensive.
How Many Sessions Are Required for Mole Removal With a Laser?
Mole removal with a laser isn’t usually a one-time treatment. In fact, most patients who use laser treatments for mole removal can expect to have at least 2 or 3 treatments in total. These treatments will be spread about 2 to 4 weeks apart, which means that your mole will be removed in as little as 2 months.
How Does Laser Treatment Work for Mole Removal?
Laser treatments for mole removal utilize high-powered bursts of light and thermal energy to break apart the pigmented cells all the way down to the sub-dermal layers. The first treatment is effective enough to flatten the mole, which diminishes its appearance, but further treatments are required to fully eliminate the pigment.
After the laser has been applied to your desired treatment area, the healing process with occur. The first week or so after your first treatment will involve small scabbing over the treatment site, which will shed by itself once the skin underneath has fully healed; the scab will return after your second treatment and will again resolve itself, leaving your skin blemish and mole-free.
Will You Need to Prepare for Treatment?
A laser treatment is a highly-focused method of rejuvenating and resurfacing the skin, both for mole removal and for other cosmetic purposes, such as anti-aging. For this reason, there are some things you will need to do to prepare for treatment. We will provide you with a comprehensive list of pre-treatment instructions to follow before your appointment to help you prepare for your appointment. Some of these pre-treatment instructions may include:
- Avoid blood-thinning medications like Aspirin and Ibuprofen for 48 hours
- Do not drink alcohol for 48 hours
- Temporarily discontinue use of certain skincare products, such as Retinol or acids
It’s important that you arrive at your appointment with clean skin, which means no make-up or moisturizer on the desired treatment area. If you would like to incorporate a topical numbing cream into your treatment, please let us know ahead of your appointment. Please reschedule your appointment if you have an active cold sore near the desired treatment location.
What Is Recovery Like?
Recovery from laser removal treatments for moles is simple and will not interfere with your life. Aside from a few post-treatment instructions you should follow to make sure your skin recovers well from the treatment, you are free to perform all of your normal daily activities as usual. Some post-treatment instructions may include:
- Avoid blood-thinning medications and alcohol for 1 to 3 days
- Do not exert yourself with strenuous activity or sweating
- Avoid hot water, including hot tubs and saunas
- Wear SPF 30 or higher over the treatment area
We may also give you certain other instructions to follow throughout your aftercare. For example, you may receive washing instructions, as well as how to care for a treatment area that requires bandaging.
How Soon Can You See Results?
Results will be evident after your first treatment, usually because the mole will appear flatter and lighter in color. The results of your treatment will continue to improve with each subsequent treatment appointment. Most patients can enjoy the full benefits of this treatment within 1 or 2 months, depending on the size, color, and location of the mole they wish to remove.
Will Results Be Permanent?
Yes and no. Generally speaking, most patients will not see a return of their mole over time because the pigment that is destroyed by the laser will not return. This is especially true in the case of moles that are caused by external factors rather than genetics. However, it is possible that some or all of the mole pigment will return after the mole has been removed, which means that this treatment is not always permanent for all patients.
Should You Be Worried About a Mole That Returns?
Not necessarily. Some patients do have moles that return after removal treatments, which is generally caused by a few mole cells being left behind by the treatment. A mole that returns after treatment is simply a regrowth and not always a sign that a cancerous lesion is returning. Of course, it’s always important to verify that a returning mole is benign, so be sure to contact your dermatological specialist if you notice your mole returning.
How Do You Know Which Moles to Be Concerned About?
Although most people do have between 10 and 40 moles on the body, not all of these moles are concerning or indicators of a cancerous lesion. And even if a mole turns out to be cancerous, there is a difference between a malignant lesion and a benign lesion. However, it’s important you understand what moles you should be concerned about.
A congenital mole is one that you are born with, which is why these are sometimes called birthmarks. Congenital moles come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and color depths, and are often raised or oval-shaped. Sometimes congenital moles can grow as you do, or sometimes they shrink throughout childhood. Although congenital moles are thought to elevate your likelihood of developing melanoma (skin cancer), they are not typically a significant cause for concern.
Common moles are those that develop over the course of a lifetime, typically before age 20. Common moles can occur anywhere on the body, have a generally uniform appearance, and can even have hair growing out of them. A few common moles are not generally a cause for concern, but if you have over 50 on your body, then you might be at elevated risk for melanoma and you should seek a skin screening.
Atypical moles are typically the ones that are the most cause for concern since they have a higher likelihood of being attached to cancerous cells. Atypical moles typically form on the torso of the body and have a raised, pebbly texture, variance in color, and are larger than a pencil eraser and misshapen. If you notice an atypical mole, it’s important to get it checked out as soon as possible.
What Causes Moles to Form?
While skin experts aren’t entirely sure what causes moles to form other than a more concentrated collection of melanocytes, there are some factors that make mole formation more common. For example, genetic factors may make it easier for moles to form on your skin. Sun exposure or sun damage can weaken the skin barrier and encourage melanocytes to grow more rapidly. Some moles are also associated with dramatic hormonal swings, such as pregnancy.
Can You Prevent Mole Formation?
Unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do to prevent the formation of moles. Aside from regularly wearing sunscreen, most of the factors that are related to mole formation are out of your control.
Who Are Good Candidates for Mole Removal?
Candidates for this treatment include any patient who has a mole they want to have removed, either on the body or the face. Most candidates seek to remove common or atypical moles, but larger congenital moles on the face are also frequently treated with laser removal. You may be a good candidate for mole removal if you have:
- Several moles
- Dark moles
- Oddly shaped moles
- Raised or pebbly moles
- Moles in difficult locations
Start Your Laser Mole Removal Treatment Today!
Whether your mole is just a mole or its a beauty mark is your prerogative, but you should know that you don’t have to live with a mole you don’t want. If you’re ready to start your laser mole removal treatments today, contact Franklin Skin and Laser in Franklin, TN to schedule your initial consultation.