Updated: Sep 8
What are Skin Tags?
Skin tags, also known by the name acrochordons are small benign skin growths that often occur in areas where skin rubs against skin or in areas when clothing is in regular contact with the skin. Skin tags are very common and occur in 46% of the general population. They are fleshy pink or light brown in colour which are harmless and normally painless.
Skin tags start off very small and continue to grow, often peaking at maximum size. The typical size of a skin tag is the same size of a grain of rice although they can grow larger up to 5cm in diameter if left untreated. Skin tag’s surface is usually smooth or irregular in appearance and is normally raised from the skin’s surface by a fleshy stalk.
Where do Skin Tags Occur?
Common areas for skin tags to appear are on the neck, underarm and groin area. It is not uncommon to have multiple skin tags around the same area.
Problems Associated with Skin Tags:
Whilst skin tags may be harmless when they rub against clothing they can cause discomfort.
If a skin tag is in an area where jewellery is worn this can also cause discomfort.
Shaving is also another area where skin tags can cause pain with extra care having to be taken to avoid accidentally cutting them.
Skin conditions such as eczema can cause discomfort around or on the skin tag.
Aesthetically they are generally not attractive and are often treated for removal by do it yourself home treatment solutions or by having a surgical procedure.
Skin Tag Treatment & Removal Procedures
In the UK, the NHS classifies skin tag removal as a cosmetic treatment and generally a local GP will not treat or remove skin tags. Home treatments in comparison to surgical procedures are far more affordable and the user has the benefit of being able to do the treatment in the comfort of their own home. If the skin tag is in a private area, then this also could influence if the user wants to treat the skin tag themselves.
The NHS recommends methods for skin tag removal that can be performed at home by reducing the skin tags blood supply.
Skin tags that are on the eyelid or eye area are not recommended to be treated using a home treatment. Other skin complaints such as moles are not suitable for removal using a home skin tag treatment. If you have any concerns what you are trying to treat you should first visit your local GP before starting any treatment.