If you are among the thousands of people wondering how to remove your skin tags and possibly even worried about skin cancer, then rest assured you are not alone. Many dermatologists report that skin tag removal is a popular topic among patients and every day, people come to them asking what can they do about these growths. Skin tags are natural flaps of excess skin, which usually develop as a result of friction. This is especially true in areas like the underarm or groin, as the skin creases found in these areas combined with moisture promote the formation of skin tags.
And while they are not harmful a tall, many people want to get rid of their growths for aesthetic reasons and are on a quest to discover the most effective and painless way of eliminating them—without damaging the surrounding areas of skin.
How to Eliminate Skin Tags According to Dermatologists
Before we go any further, let’s get one thing clear. While skin lesions can be annoying, they are not a medical emergency by any means. They are essentially just polyps of skin that appear on any individual, especially if skin tags run in the family. While you will find an endless list of suggestions online for removing skin tags yourself, not all of them offer solid advice. And the problem with patients taking matters into their own hands is that there is a much larger risk of infection and complications. This is why every reputable dermatologist will always recommend that you have your skin tags removed by a licensed professional.
Dermatologists rely on a variety of simple procedures to safely remove skin tags. They will most likely use Cryo therapy to freeze the skin tags off, or they could also remove them with a scalpel or scissors. Your skin specialist will be able to determine the best removal method once they have had a chance to look at it in person.
Let’s also not forget that removing lesions yourself can be compared to cutting your own hair. Unless you have the necessary experience to make a clean cut, its never going to go how you expect it to. For one thing, a dermatologist will have a trained medical eye and they will be able to determine if there is an underlying cause of skin tags and they also will be able to remove it virtually painlessly. Personally, the pain factor is a deal breaker and it is something that should be at the forefront of everyone’s minds before whipping out the kitchen scissors to hack their skin tags off.
Do Skin Tags Always Have to Be Removed?
The majority of skin tags are completely benign flaps of skin. They can appear for a number of reasons and removing them is a matter of personal choice. If they are sore or inflamed, then you need to book in to see your skin specialist, as this could be an indication of a more serious skin condition. Normally, there will always be symptoms that indicate the need to consult a professional such as:
- Your skin tag is extremely tender and is sore to touch
- You find that your skin tag is constantly rubbing against your clothing
- Your skin tag has become scabby
- You notice bleeding for no apparent reason
- It changes in shape or color
How Much Will It Cost for a Dermatologist to Remove a Skin Tag?
While not extortionately expensive, you will be looking at paying between $100 to $500 go have your skin tags removed at the dermatologist’s office. The exact price depends on a few factors such as the medical cover you have, the number of skin tags that you want to remove and the doctor you choose.
Will Your Health Insurance Cover Skin Tag Removal?
In most cases, no. This is because 99% of the time skin tags are completely harmless and, therefore, removing them would be a personal choice based on aesthetic reasons. So, if you imagine not being happy with the shape of your nose and wanting surgery to change it, it’s the same thing. Most health care companies will not cover aesthetic treatments although, in some cases, it is necessary to remove skin tags in order to perform further tests and under these circumstances, if your dermatologist suggests removing a skin tag for this reason, then you should be covered by your insurance.
If I Make an Appointment to Have My Skin Tags Removed, will It Hurt?
There are a variety of removal procedures that dermatologists commonly use to remove these benign skin growths such as freeing them or using surgical scissors. None of them are painful and the procedure is usually complete in less than one hour. Skin tags are basically skin folds and often located in a sensitive area, so you may be given a local anesthetic or a topical numbing cream. Skin tag removal procedures are always performed in the office, on an outpatient basis. This means that you can return to life as usual as soon as you are done and you will be given the appropriate aftercare instructions. It is important that you make sure you follow any aftercare advice strictly, as you don’t want to end up with unsightly scarring or any nasty infections.
A Word of Warning about Taking Matters into Your Own Hands
While it’s perfectly understandable that the majority of people could do without spending a casual $300 on visiting a skin specialist to remove their unsightly skin tags, doctors never recommend that you try to snip your skin tag off yourself. Several physicians have reported stories of patients trying to remove their own skin tags by tying dental floss around it, but then parts of the tag will be left behind thus causing redness and inflammation. There are also several risks associated with DIY removal methods such as:
· Traumatizing the skin
So, when you consider that you will probably end up in the dermatologist’s office regardless, it makes much more sense to do things properly the first time and leave skin tag removals to the pros.
What about Natural Methods?
With regards to natural DIY skin tag removal at home, there is no evidence that they actually work all the time. Many people swear by applying vinegar or tea tree oil to skin tags as they will fall off on their own, but this is not backed up by medical evidence. In fact, Dermatologists will argue that these methods work at all, as you can’t just dissolve tissue and make skin tags disappear just by putting a bit of vinegar on it.
Ultimately, if you want to try and use a natural home remedy to dissolve your skin tags, then you won’t do yourself any harm. You might find, however, that you have wasted time and that it doesn’t work. So, it’s definitely important to manage your expectations when it comes to DIY skin tag removal methods.
You also won’t be surprised to learn that the Internet is full of questionable suggestions for removing skin tags. For example, one home remedy consists of tying dental floss tightly around the skin tag to cut off the oxygen supply and make it fall off. This is an incredibly bad idea because it will be incredibly painful and will also traumatize your skin. There are also several hoax websites that offer miracle ointments that make your skin tags vanish overnight—don’t fall for it!
If your skin tags are bothering you enough that you notice them all the time, then its worth spending the money required to have them safely removed under sterile conditions by an experienced professional.
One of the main reasons why trying to remove skin tags yourself at home is not recommended, is due to the fact that many people aren’t fully aware of the differences between skin tags and moles. And whilst skin tags are very rarely cancerous, in some cases moles are. If you try and hack your skin tag off yourself at home, you will be opening a can of worms that won’t always have a happy ending. No reputable dermatologist will ever recommend DIY methods for getting rid of skin tags and let’s face it- anyone can write an article online that looks like it is full of well-researched information, but sadly this isn’t always the case. Given that you will most likely want to remove your skin tags due to aesthetic reasons, the last thing you want is to be left with an even bigger and more permanent problem like scarring! Most dermatologists will not charge for consultations, especially if they work with your medical insurance company. With this in mind, before you are tempted to save your hard-earned cash by dipping your toenail scissors in antiseptic and braving the snip—please consider how easily even the simplest of procedures could go wrong and make an appointment with a dermatologist.