Skin tags can affect anyone at any age. They can be unsightly, uncomfortable, or inconvenient. However, they’re almost always harmless. The majority of the time, skin tag removals are performed for aesthetic reasons.
Home removal kits can have all sorts of problems. They often lead to excessive bleeding and even infection. The good news is that a cosmetic surgeon can quickly and safely remove a skin tag for you in no time at all.
Read on to learn more about these pesky growths, why they show up, and how to have them eliminated.
What are skin tags?
A skin tag will start as a small bump on the skin, then develop into a small, flesh-coloured skin growth attached by a stalk.
They can appear anywhere but mostly form in creases and folds on the body. This includes places such as the eyelids, neck, armpits, groin, or under the breasts. They can grow between 2 mm and 1 cm, and in rare cases as large as 5 cm.
When do skin tags appear?
Skin tags are common in people over 30. They are caused by collagen and blood vessels that become trapped within a layer of skin. Pregnant women are more likely to develop skin tags, as well as diabetics and people with some strains of HPV.
When should I visit a doctor?
In some cases, you may mistake a skin tag for another skin condition. For example, you may mistake a skin lesion like a skin tag with an epidermoid cyst, which can be related to cancers.
If your skin tag is inflamed, bleeding, growing, or changing colour, you should visit a doctor to receive a medical advice diagnosis. It is important not to self-diagnose. You should always have any concerning skin growth assessed by a medical professional.
Though harmless, many people find skin tags unsightly. They can be painful if they rub against other skin or get nicked while shaving. A cosmetic surgeon can remove them using one of the methods outlined below.
How to remove skin tags at home
While there are many over-the-counter skin tag solutions available, you should never attempt removal at home. Attempts to snip off a skin tag on your own or cut off its circulation can result in bleeding or infection.
This can be especially dangerous if your growth turns out not to be a skin tag. It’s not worth the risk.
As for natural home remedies such as applying apple cider vinegar, coconut oil, or tea tree oil, there is no evidence to suggest any of these solutions are effective. They can also potentially result in skin irritation.
How are skin tags removed with a cosmetic surgeon?
Instead, visit a cosmetic surgeon for safe, quick, and effective skin tag surgical removal. All of these methods are fairly painless. Also, the method used depends on both the size and location of the tag.
- Cryosurgery: This is the most non-invasive skin tag removal procedure, and the most common procedure for small skin tags. In this procedure, liquid nitrogen is used to freeze the tag, similar to many wart treatments, and the tag will fall off on its own in 1-2 weeks.
- Electrocautery: A needle with an electric current is used to remove the tag and cauterize the skin to prevent bleeding, leaving only a small scab.
- Snipping or excision: The most effective method for large skin tags. A miniature injection of lidocaine is used to numb the area, and then sharp surgical scissors are used to cut off the skin tag. Often the electrocautery needle mentioned above is then used to stop any bleeding.
Find skin tag relief in Newmarket & Richmond Hill
Skin tags can only be ignored for so long before this skin lesion creates unnecessary irritation, grows to an unmanageable size or just becomes a nuisance that impacts your day to day life.
Plastic Surgery Skin Clinic benefits from having doctors on-site, taking us a step above other med spa clinics.
Book a consultation with a skilled plastic surgeon that can remove your skin tags or other types of irritating skin lesions today!