About Everything You Need to Know About Skin Tags
If you have noticed that you have little light reddish brown colored pieces of skin seemingly hanging off various parts of your body, then you have skin tags.
Thankfully, these little annoyances are completely harmless and fairly easy to remove. I will get into the removal process later on in this article, but let’s first dive deeper into what skin tags really are.
Skin tags have many different scientific names since they can appear all over the body, so it is much easier just to refer to them as skin tags.
They can show up literally anywhere on the body that has skin on it (so basically everywhere), but most commonly show up where there is friction generated by rubbing an area of skin with other skin or clothing.
The most common spots for skin tags to show up are:
- The armpits
- The area beneath the mammaries
- On the eyelids
- In the groin area
- All on and around the neck
- In the upper area of the chest
Now, what exactly are skin tags? They are tumors. Before you freak out and think you have cancer, you should probably know that they are benign tumors.
This means they are not cancerous. And like I stated earlier, they are harmless. You won’t even feel any pain from them unless you try picking at them or your clothes rub furiously against them.
You also may feel some pain if you accidentally shave on them. And unfortunately, doing any of those things won’t get rid of them and will probably make them worse.
As for the risk factors of skin tags, well, you are more likely to get them if people in your family have had bad outbreaks of them.
It is hereditary thing, but not always. Another risk factor is being overweight. Part of the reason for this is because they can easily form under rolls of skin due to the skin on skin traction that goes on in those areas.
There is no difference in likelihood of developing skin tags in men or women, but if you are pregnant, your chances of getting skin tags goes up.
Also, if you have diabetes, your chances of developing skin tags increases. Another risk factor for skin tags is age. You are most likely to start developing them after your 50th birthday.
Also, if you your levels of sex hormones have changed due to taking steroids, your chances of developing skin tags will go up. One final risk factor for skin tags is if you have the human papilloma virus.
An interesting study was conducted and concluded that people with more than one skin tag had higher odds of having a resistance to insulin.
These results even took all of the other aforementioned risk factors into consideration and still the researchers came to that conclusion.
This correlation was also made in a survey that was conducted that came to a similar conclusion.
Some folks might have gotten lucky and never knew that they had skin tags even though they did. How? In some very rare cases, they actually can just fall off without any pain.
In other rare cases they have actually rubbed off, but don’t expect to be one of these lucky people when you notice a skin tag.
Your best bet is to get it removed ASAP because while harmless, they are not an attractive thing to have on your skin.
And like I said, they are a reddish brown color, but they can also be the same color as the skin. In many cases, the skin tags are seemingly raised up by stalky looking thing called peduncles.
And again, they are relatively tiny but some people have gotten pretty big ones that cap out at a size of a whopping five centimeters.
Skin tags of that size are incredibly rare, however. If you develop skin tags, they will most likely be between two millimeters and one centimeter in size. Really small, but quite noticeable.
How susceptible is the human race to skin tags? It is estimated by the National Institutes of Health that roughly 46 percent of people have skin tags right now. That number is expected to go up to 59 percent by the time people reach their 70th birthday.
Natural Skin Tags Removal Methods
Now, it is time to talk about the various removal methods.
Like I said earlier, skin tags are completely harmless and removing them is rather easy. However, you should be aware that there are no health risks associated with them so if you don’t want to or can’t afford to get them removed, you don’t have to worry.
They are unattractive, but again, completely harmless. They may be an annoyance when you are trying to shave and a big one could cause you some pain if it is frequently rubbed against, though.
Anyways, there are various ways to remove skin tags. One such way is through cauterization. This involves using heat through electrolysis to literally burn the skin tag off of your skin.
Another method is through cryosurgery. If you have heard of cryogenics, you probably know where we’re going here.
In this removal method, your skin tags are blasted with liquid nitrogen and turn into a block of ice. Then the skin tags can just be broken off or fall off on their own later on.
Another such method is through ligation. This involves cutting off the blood flowing to your skin tags which will make them unable to be nourished and eventually cause them to just fall off.
One final method a dermatologist may choose to perform is excision. This is the simplest method and might be the one that causes a little pain. This involves using a sterile scalpel and cutting the skin tag off.
One quick warning: None of these methods should be performed at home. In fact, the aforementioned National Institutes of Health overtly warn against self-removal of skin tags. Just call up a trained medical professional to do the simple procedure.
At Home Methods
If you have tiny skin tags and don’t want to go through the trouble of going to a dermatologist to get them removed, you can remove them yourself using dental floss to cut off the blood flowing to the skin tags.
You could also try picking at it with your nails until they come off. Again though, this is only for really small skin tags.
Another safe self-removal method is through the use of over-the-counter substances. These substances typically freeze the skin tags (like the aforementioned cryosurgery) which cause them to fall off after a week or so.
If you have ever had a wart and used over-the-counter solutions to get rid of it, then you are probably familiar with this method. This method is probably the most preferable as it is cheaper than going to a dermatologist.
Oh, and don’t believe what some people say on the internet that removing skin tags causes more of them to appear.
Skin tags are not like cockroaches, okay?
There is zero hard scientific evidence that even hints at this being the case so don’t worry.
People on the internet just love pretending to be doctors and coming up with stupid ideas like that. It’s totally and completely false.