What causes skin tags during pregnancy? Skin tags are caused by hyperactive growth of your outer layer of skin. They’re most prevalent in older people and expectant mothers, likely spurred on by hormonal changes (and you’ve got plenty of those going on right now). Pregnancy weight gain is another possible cause.
Some pregnancy skin tags will disappear on their own after you deliver. If not, they can be removed easily by your dermatologist. Snipping the stalk of a dangling skin tag is so quick a procedure you might not need anesthesia. Freezing is another fast treatment option.
Skin tags typically disappear on their own after birth, but if there’s still extra skin hanging around a few months after baby’s born, you may want to schedule a visit with your dermatologist to have them removed. The process is quick and painless (kind of like removing a wart), and you’ll come out tag-free.
It is not clear exactly what causes skin tags, but it may happen when clusters of collagen and blood vessels become trapped inside thicker pieces of skin. As they are more common in skin creases or folds, they may be mainly caused by skin rubbing against skin.
“Skin tags are small skin growths that commonly occur in the fleshy folds of your skin. They are usually about 2 to 5 millimeters in size — the size of a tiny pebble — but can sometimes grow larger — up to half an inch,” explains Kateryna Kiselova, DO, physician at Penn Family Medicine Valley Forge.
When should I be worried about a skin tag?
It’s also possible (when self-diagnosing) to misdiagnose a skin tag. As a rule of thumb, see a dermatologist if you develop any unusual growths on your skin. The situation may be more urgent if a skin growth dramatically increases in size or changes its shape and color in a short amount of time.
Warts tend to have a “warty” irregular surface whereas skin tags are usually smooth. Warts tend to be flat whereas tags are more like bumps hanging from thin stalk. While warts are almost entirely caused by human papilloma virus (HPV), tags are rarely associated with HPV.
Skin tags are not cancerous and do not have the potential to become cancerous. Nearly half of all adults in the United States have one or more skin tags. Skin tags contain loosely arranged collagen fibers and blood vessels encased in a thicker or thinner surface layer of the skin, or the epidermis.
How do I use it?
- Soak a cotton ball in apple cider vinegar.
- Secure the cotton ball to your skin tag with a bandage.
- Remove it after 10 to 15 minutes.
- Wash the area with soap and warm water.
- Allow the area to dry — don’t put a bandage over the skin tag.
- Repeat daily for two weeks.
Sometimes skin tags fall off on their own as they get pulled and irritated. When this happens, they dry out, which makes them fall off. If they bother you, your doctor can remove them by: Cutting them off in the office.