Do you see that tiny, annoying, outpouching part hanging out of your skin?
Yes, that irritable thing is called ‘skin tag’ or “acrochordon”.
These small, fleshy growths strike up to half of all adults. You might have one right now: a small, fleshy protrusion of skin that doesn’t hurt or itch. It’s probably the same colour as the rest of your body, and it may be circular or oblong, usually hanging by a thin stalk.
You may say, “Yeah I see them, everywhere!”
That’s likely as skin tags are pouches of skin that tend to pop up on parts of your anatomy that naturally have lots of skin folds, such as under your arms or breasts, or on your neck, groin, and eyelids.
Are skin tags serious?
Some of the spots and marks that pop up on your skin can be serious, but skin tags, in general, are not. Soft and smooth in texture, their colour can vary: they are usually the same tone as the rest of your skin, but they can also be brown, and they may appear darker in fair-skinned individuals. Some skin tags even turn red or black, if they get twisted and their blood supply is cut off.
“Skin tags in themselves are not harmful, however, they can become painful due to irritation and rubbing from jewellery or clothing,” says our expert dermatologist at Skin City India.
What causes skin tags? And Why do you get them?
Obese peoples are prone to get skin tags because they have more folds of skin. Carrying extra weight is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes, and people with this kind of diabetes have more skin tags, as do people with high blood-sugar levels. This suggests a relationship between skin tags and the hormone insulin. “Obese people with diabetes are more likely to have skin tags because they have higher levels of insulin,” says our doctor. Insulin promotes growth, and it may also cause skin cells to replicate. This, in turn, leads to the development of skin tags, which can be an early warning sign for diabetes.
Hormones, other than insulin are equally at fault here. Pregnant women often develop skin tags during the second trimester. Skin tags also crop up in people who produce too much growth hormone in their pituitary gland in the brain.
Wait, it doesn’t end here…
Certain health conditions bring with them a higher risk of skin tags. One of these is Crohn’s disease, a chronic condition that causes inflammation in the digestive tract and triggers side effects such as diarrhea, abdominal pain, cramping, constipation and rectal bleeding. Skin tags in people with Crohn’s tend to appear at the opening of the anus.
What should you do? Should you get rid of them?
Usually, skin tags fall off. But in general, once they appear, they’re usually there to stay. “It is not medically necessary to remove skin tags and it is fine to leave them be. Removal can be considered if they are irritated or if they present a cosmetic concern”, says our dermatologist.
What is the safe way to remove it? Any medical treatments to treat skin tags?
When it comes to skin tag removal, its best left to the experts and not make it a DIY project. You might be tempted to cut yours off quickly and easily with cuticle scissors. But hold that scissor right there!!
Doing so will not only cause pain, bleeding, scarring but will become the potential breeding ground for infection!
At Skin City India our doctors are happy to help with a range of treatment options that can remove the skin tags in one appointment. These include cryotherapy (freezing), surgical excision or laser treatment.
Get the tag of gorgeousness, not skin tags!
If you’re inclined to get yours removed, we’re here to help. Visit our clinics and book an appointment today!