Skin tags are small flaps of skin that just grow sometimes. They are usually flat and attached to the body by a thin stalk. They most commonly develop on parts of the body where skin on skin friction is common, such as the armpits, the groin, the eyelids, and under the breast. Risk factors for getting skin tags include being overweight, being pregnant, or having diabetes. Although they are harmless, some people prefer to remove them because they are unattractive; however, they don’t know how to remove skin tags. And some in certain locations can be annoying by repeatedly getting caught on jewelry or clothing, sometimes leading to bleeding. Do not try to remove a skin tag at home; always seek professional care for this task.
What Causes Skin Tags?
Technically, skin tags are benign tumors of the skin. They have a rather complex structure with a core of fibers, ducts, nerves, blood vessels, and fat cells surrounded by a layer of skin. It’s not really clear what causes them to form, but based on their common locations, their formation seems to be triggered by chronic exposure of the skin to friction, namely rubbing frequently against other skin or clothing. They are rarely found in young people and tend to develop only after middle-age. When they first start to develop, they are about the size of a pinhead; some can grow as large as two centimeters in diameter. Some people appear to have inherited a predisposition to develop skin tags and may develop numerous ones at many different locations on their body.
How are They Removed?
It’s normal to wonder how to remove skin tags. The simplest method of removal is to use a pair of sterile surgical scissors to simply remove it. Other methods destroy the tissues of the skin tag, and it generally falls off days after the treatment. After proper removal, skin tags rarely grow back, but other skin tags can develop at the same site or on other parts of the body.
Why Can’t I Just Cut It Off at Home?
Many people are tempted to just cut off their troublesome skin tags at home or to ligate them (tying a very tight loop of thread around the base to cut off the blood circulation). However, after cutting off a skin tag, there is often bleeding and the site can get infected. The ligation method in particular is very prone to developing infections, some of which can be severe. When it comes to removing skin tags, it’s always best to leave it to a professional.
If you have a troublesome or cosmetically displeasing skin tag, stop wondering how to remove skin tags on your own. Simply visit us at Dermatology Skin Care & Associates in Mason for professional skin tag removal. Contact us today to book an appointment.