The cause of skin tags isn’t quite clear; however, one study links skin tags to obesity and type 2 diabetes. Another study links the human papillomavirus (HPV) to skin tag development. Pregnancy and other hormonal changes may also contribute to the growth of skin tags.
If you have a skin tag that bothers you, Dr. Johnny Serrano, an experienced surgeon at his Glendale, Arizona, practice, Precision Surgery and Advanced Vein Therapy, offers simple solutions. Dr. Serrano easily removes skin tags in his office so you can get back to your daily routine with little or no downtime.
Here are some of your best options for removing those pesky skin tags, including at-home remedies and minor surgical procedures.
At-home skin tag solutions
If instant removal of an annoying skin tag is what you’re after, then at-home solutions probably aren’t for you. These take time to dry out or break down the skin tag tissue — mostly collagen fibers gone astray — so the skin tag can fall off. It could take a few weeks to see results, but if you want to avoid a medical procedure, it may not hurt to try one of these homeopathic methods.
Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil has antifungal and antiviral properties and is safe for your skin. Apply tea tree oil to a skin tag and cover with a bandage. Repeat nightly until the skin tag dries out and falls off.
Apple cider vinegar
Soak a cotton ball in apple cider vinegar and place it on top of the skin tag. Place a bandage over the cotton ball to keep it in place for 15-30 minutes. Remove and wash the area. Do this daily until the skin tag falls off. It may take a couple weeks for the acid in the vinegar to break down the skin tag tissue.
This method won’t help you smell nice, but applying crushed garlic to a skin tag and securing it with a bandage overnight may make the skin tag shrink. Over time, the skin tag may even disappear, if you can tolerate a strong garlic smell in your bedroom each night.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant. When you apply liquid vitamin E to a skin tag, it may help the growth disappear in a few days.
If you’re not keen on applying natural solutions to remove a pesky skin tag, you might try an over-the-counter product. These products typically take several days of applying a liquid or ointment before the skin tag falls off.
A word of caution
We strongly advise against tying a piece of dental floss or string around a skin tag, as you risk infection. If you’re not interested in home remedies, it’s best to let an experienced surgeon like Dr. Serrano remove your skin tag safely in his office. This is especially true when you have skin tags around your eyes or genitals, or the skin tags are too large to treat at home.
There are several ways Dr. Serrano may suggest removing your skin tag during a quick, in-office procedure. These methods provide nearly immediate results, and you know you’re in a safe, sterile environment, minimizing any risk of infection or complications.
Dr. Serrano burns the skin tag, causing it to fall off after just one or two treatments.
Dr. Serrano cuts the skin tag off in a simple surgical procedure.
This involves freezing the skin tag with liquid nitrogen, which causes it to fall off.
In each of these professional skin tag solutions, Dr. Serrano minimizes your chances of scarring and explains how to care for the area until it heals completely. Truly, in-office techniques are your best bet for safely removing skin tags.
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