Tiny, soft pieces of skin that are formed on the skin and look like small balloons are known as skin tags. The color of skin tags usually matches the skin color of the individual but it can be darker than the individual’s skin tone. Doctors call these skin tags as acrochordons. They don’t harm the person in any sense but people want to remove them as they look bad.
At what age does one get skin tags and why do they appear?
In most cases, skin tags occur in people over the age of 50 years. They are found in both men and women, and they may also appear in young individuals and babies.
There is no specific reason for skin tags but it is said that they occur from the rubbing of skin with skin and obesity is also said to be the main reason for skin tags but some people also say that they appear as a result of rubbing of clothes a person wears if they are not fat. Another reason of skin tag appearance is said to be the imbalance of hormones.
Location of skin tags development
Skin tags can develop on any part of the body but the most common locations are:
- Bottom of the neck
- Under the breasts
- In the folds of the skin in the buttocks
If the skin tags appear in babies then it is believed that they appear due to obesity as most small babies are bulky and skin tags usually appear in the folds of their skin but if they appear in young people, then it is believed that they develop due to the constant rubbing of their eyes as the location of skin tags in young people is mostly the eyelids.
The size of a skin tag is between 2mm to 5mm in diameter but it can become large in size up to 5 cm in diameter. The skin tag will bleed if it gets damaged or is pulled off unintentionally.
What people believe
Some people believe that if the skin tag is removed or cut down, then it will grow again on the same place but that is not true.
Methods to get rid of skin tags
Many medicines are available in stores to get rid of skin tags but it should be kept in mind that there are no officially approved creams to remove them. There is also a risk of skin inflammation from creams used by people. Removal of skin tag is a slow process so a person has to wait for it.
If the skin tag gets twisted then there is a great chance of getting rid of it because blood flow to it is blocked and it falls off.
Given below are some methods of physical removal of skin tags
When an individual consults a doctor to get rid of skin tags, they are given 4 options to select from:
- The first option is Cauterization in which the skin tag is in effect burned off under a local anesthetic by either electro-cauterization, or chemical cauterization
- The second option is known as Cryosurgery in which freezing the skin tag off under a local anesthetic is done
- The third option is Excision which is surgical removal by cutting the skin tag
- The fourth one is Surgical litigation in which tying the skin tag off with a medical suture is done
There is also a fifth method available but it is not given by doctors because it can be done at home.
The method is known as DIY physical removal. It is done in the same way a doctor or dermatologist would carry out a surgical litigation procedure. The person can do it themselves by tying the skin tag off with dental floss. To block the blood supply to the skin tag, tie a knot with dental floss in place. After some days, the tag will wither and fall off on its own.
DIY physical removal option is not a good one and it is not suggested due to the reason that the person might not tie the floss in the right position and if that happens then the removal will not be complete. It will leave behind a stub which might be more difficult to get rid of.
Natural methods of getting rid of skin tags
Here are some natural methods by which a person can get rid of skin tags because they are preferred over going to a doctor for treatment. A person should know that these natural methods are not proven but it doesn’t mean that they don’t work or give good results.
1. Tea tree oil
Tea oil is very effective and is used for the treatment of a lot of skin issues in which acne, athlete’s foot, and scabies are included.
To benefit from tea tree oil, a person has to take a ball of cotton wool and soak it in the oil to apply on the location of the skin tag. It should be applied 2 times a day and within 1 month, the skin tag will be removed.
2. Castor oil
Castor oil is also effective and can be used to get rid of skin tags.
To get good results, it should be mixed with baking soda in a proportion of 2 to 1. It should be applied regularly daily and the person will get rid of the skin tags in 2 to 4 weeks. If it smells bad, then citrus oil can be added in it.
3. Apple cider vinegar
It can be used by soaking in a cotton ball and should be applied 2 times daily. Time required for removal is between 2 to 4 weeks.
4. Banana peel
A person can cut the banana peel into tiny pieces and place it on the skin tag; the banana pieces should be changed daily. This should be done until the tag is removed.
Make garlic paste and apply it onto the skin tag for the whole night. It should be applied before going to bed and it should be washed off in the morning. Using this continuously for 3 nights can help in getting rid of the tag but this method should not be used for more than 3 nights because there are chances of burning of skin by the continuous use of garlic.
Ginger can be used by removing a small peel and rubbing it on the skin tag. This should be done for 14 days.
7. Pineapple juice
A person can use pineapple juice to get rid of the skin tag. It should be applied 2 times a day and there is no need to clean it. It should be used for 7 days for good results.
There is another method which is cutting the tag with sharp small scissors but a person should sterilize it for hygiene. The tag may bleed after the cut but the best method to stop the blood is to press it with a cloth for a few minutes.