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Skin Tag Removal: Home Remedies, OTC Options, and more
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Skin tags are noncancerous growths that are typically seen in the folds of the skin in areas such as the neck, armpits, breasts, groyne, and eyelids. Skin tags are typically soft. These growths are made up of loose collagen fibers that have been trapped inside the skin’s thicker sections.
According to Kemunto Mokaya, MD, who spoke with Healthline about skin tags, skin tags are exceedingly frequent and impact about half of the population. According to her, they are also more prevalent among persons of advanced age, people who are overweight, and people who have diabetes.
These skin lesions are mostly innocuous; but, if they become caught on jewelry or clothing, they can cause a great deal of discomfort. If these growths are causing you discomfort, there is help available. The following is an examination of several methods for removing skin tags, including surgical excision, therapies that can be found in the home, and over-the-counter medicines.
Home treatments for skin tags
In most cases, skin tags do not require any medical attention or a trip to the doctor. It is conceivable that you already have the necessary supplies in your kitchen or medicine cabinet in order to remove a tag if you make the decision to do so. The majority of home cures include applying dry heat to the skin tag in order to cause it to reduce in size and eventually come off.
It is essential to keep in mind that the recovery time for these non-invasive treatments will always be significantly longer than that of surgical operations. Under no circumstances should you attempt to save time by removing a skin tag on your own; doing so puts you at risk for infection and bleeding.
The oil of tea tree
When diluted in a carrier oil, tea tree oil, which possesses characteristics that make it effective against both viruses and fungi, can be safely applied to the skin.
To begin, wash the region that is affected. After that, rub the oil into the skin tag in a circular motion using a cotton swab or a Q-tip. Cover the wound with a bandage and leave it on overnight. Continue using this remedy night after night for a few more nights, or until the tag dries out and comes off on its own.
If you have a skin tag, you shouldn’t throw away your old banana peels since they can help treat it. Banana peels are another natural remedy that can be used to remove skin tags. It’s possible that this is because of the antioxidant characteristics that are contained in them,
A piece of the banana peel should be placed over the tag, and then a bandage should be applied over it. Repeat this step every night until the tag comes off.
Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar should be soaked into a cotton swab, and then the cotton swab should be placed over the skin tag. After 15 to 30 minutes of having the section wrapped in the bandage, the skin should be washed. Perform this process each day for the next two weeks.
The acidity of apple cider vinegar causes the tissue that surrounds the skin tag to break down, which ultimately results in the skin tag falling off.
Vitamin E Aging may contribute to skin tags. Because vitamin E is an antioxidant that prevents wrinkles and keeps the skin healthy, placing liquid vitamin E over a skin tag may cause the growth to disappear in a couple of days. This is because vitamin E fights wrinkles and maintains healthy skin.
You just need to massage the oil into the skin tag and the skin around it until the tag falls off.
Through its anti-inflammatory properties, garlic contributes to an improvement in the outward appearance of the skin. Crushed garlic can be applied directly on top of a skin tag, followed by the application of a bandage and leaving it on overnight to remove the skin tag naturally.
Clean up the area first thing in the morning. Repeat the process until the skin tag becomes smaller and eventually vanishes.
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Products available without a prescription that treat skin tags
A skin tag can be safely removed using a variety of over-the-counter (OTC) medications, as well as home cures, which are sold in grocery shops and pharmacies.
Cryotherapy, often known as the use of extremely low temperatures, is what freezing kits utilize to get rid of undesirable skin tissue.
According to Mokaya, in order to eradicate benign lesions such as skin tags, temperatures between -4 degrees Fahrenheit and -58 degrees Fahrenheit are necessary.
She suggests looking for a wart or skin tag removal kit that can be purchased over the counter and is one that, when used correctly, can attain the lowest temperature. Last but not least, Mokaya brings out the fact that removal creams and cryotherapy have the potential to provoke irritation and contact dermatitis, despite the fact that they are still useful for temporary applications.
When should one go to the doctor?
Skin tags are not the only skin diseases that can look similar to warts and moles. It is advisable to have your skin tags checked out by a medical professional because certain moles might become malignant. Skin tags are something that can be diagnosed by either your general physician or a dermatologist. They will most likely accomplish this through a visual examination that takes place in person; however, telehealth is also a possibility.
The vast majority of skin tags are benign growths, but if yours is unusual or appears to be worrisome in any way, your physician may recommend a biopsy as a preventative measure.
Procedures involving surgery for skin tags
The excision of skin tags using surgical means is a frequent outpatient treatment. Your doctor will first numb the region with a local anesthetic, and then, depending on the size of the skin tag and where it is located, he or she will conduct one of the following procedures:
Cauterization. Your dermatologist will remove the skin tag by applying heat to it.
Cryosurgery. Your dermatologist will apply a fine mist of liquid nitrogen to the skin tag, which will cause the growth to freeze and fall off.
Electrocautery. Your doctor may also be able to remove the skin tag by using a specific electric current to burn it off.
Ligation. Sometimes moles and skin tags can be removed from the affected area by using surgical thread to sever the blood supply.
Surgery. Your doctor will use surgical scissors to cut the skin tag off at its base. This procedure is quick and painless. The necessity of bandages or sutures will be determined by the size of the skin tag as well as its location.
Removal aftercare tips
Infections and other problems almost never arise following the excision of skin tags. Some people are left with a scar after having an abnormal growth removed, however, this mark may fade away with time.
After removing a skin tag in the comfort of your own home, treat the wound with antibiotic ointment and keep it wrapped with a bandage in the same manner as you would a cut. This reduces the likelihood of getting an infection. Visit a medical professional if the region starts to hurt or bleeds.
After a medical procedure to remove a skin tag, your physician may urge you to keep the wound dry for at least 48 hours, after which you should gently wash the area with soap and water. This is to prevent the site from becoming infected.
In addition, it is possible that your physician will schedule a follow-up consultation in order to examine the incision and take out any stitches (if they were needed).
What exactly is the cause of skin tags?
It is not entirely apparent what factors lead to the development of skin tags. It is possible that friction plays a part in their development because they typically appear in skin creases. We do know that they are composed of blood vessels and collagen and that they have a covering of skin that covers the outside of their bodies.
Studies have shown that there is a link between the human papillomavirus (HPV) and skin tags.
Insulin resistance, which has been linked to both the development of type 2 diabetes and prediabetes, is also a possible contributor to the growth of skin tags. Insulin-resistant individuals do not absorb glucose from the bloodstream as efficiently as healthy individuals.
According to the findings of a study that was conducted in 2010, the presence of multiple skin tags was linked to insulin resistance, a high body mass index, and elevated triglycerides.
Another common pregnancy-related complication is the development of skin tags. It’s possible that the pregnancy hormones and weight gain are to blame for this. In extremely unusual instances, the presence of multiple skin tags may indicate a problem with the endocrine or hormonal system.
There is a possibility that there is a genetic link as well. It is not unheard of for more than one member of the same family to have them. However, moles and skin tags are not infectious.
Tags on the skin are typically painless and harmless; therefore, treatment is not required unless they become irritated.
If a skin tag does not respond to therapy at home, bleeds, or continues to grow, you should make an appointment with your doctor. Home treatments and over-the-counter medications can be effective solutions that are also economical.
A skin tag can be successfully removed using one of several techniques with minimum discomfort and scarring.