How do we deal with unwanted moles and skin tags?
Moles and skin tags are common, but there are various reasons that you may wish to remove them. In this blog post, we’ll outline what they are, when we should remove them, and what procedures for doing this are like.
What are moles and skin tags?
Moles and skin tags are growths on the skin. While skin tags are less common, the average person has between 10 and 50 moles. They are often darker than the rest of your skin, either black or brown, though they can be pink. Moles appear more frequently on lighter skin.
Moles can grow anywhere on the body. However, skin tags more commonly grow in the folds of the neck, armpits, breasts, groin area, and eyelids. You are more likely to develop a skin tag as you age, if you have type 2 diabetes, and when you are pregnant.
Reasons to remove a mole or skin tag
While moles and skin tags are usually benign, there is a small risk of a mole becoming cancerous. Skin tags do not carry a cancer risk, but you may mistake certain skin cancers for a skin tag.
Signs of a cancerous mole
To help you identify a cancerous mole, follow the ABCDE checklist. A cancerous mole may have just one or all of the following signs.
A mole that is not cancerous may also fit these criteria, so you must discuss your symptoms with a specialist. For peace of mind, some people choose to have certain moles removed. Though, there are many others reasons you may wish to remove a mole.
Other reasons to remove a mole or skin tag:
- Visually unappealing
- Frequently irritated e.g. by clothes
- It causes discomfort or embarrassment
If you develop a new, discoloured skin tag or mole, we recommend speaking to a medical professional for advice. Our doctors can refer you to one of our in-house dermatologists for further testing; book an appointment today.
Can I get rid of moles and skin tags at home?
Although you can find many home remedies online, there is no evidence that any of these work. More importantly, certain home remedies can irritate or harm your skin and even hide signs of cancer. These at-home techniques can also lead to scarring and infection.
We recommend speaking with your doctor or pharmacist before trying any at-home remedy for moles and skin tags. Our doctors and dermatologists can further explain why we do not recommend at-home remedies for mole and skin tag removal.
How to get rid of unwanted moles and skin tags
At your consultation, we can discuss your reasons for wanting to remove a mole or skin tag in depth. Then, we can recommend the most suitable solution for you.
At The Clinic @ 78, we offer various minimally-invasive procedures for skin tag and mole removal with minimal scarring. All of our treatments are fast, outpatient procedures.
After treatment, you should follow all aftercare instructions, such as applying any ointments we give you to prevent infections.
Also known as cryosurgery or cryotherapy, we spray liquid nitrogen onto the mole or skin tag to freeze it off. After freezing, it can take two to three weeks for the mole or skin tag to fall off.
Another technique to remove a mole or skin tag involves using an electrical current to burn it off. You may need a couple of treatments to fully remove a mole or skin tag with this procedure.
This procedure involves numbing the area and using a surgical blade to remove the elevated skin. Unlike excision, this technique does not require stitches.
During excision, we numb the area and then carefully remove the entire mole or skin tag, closing the area with stitches. We may recommend excision if your mole is showing signs of cancer.
This procedure is non-invasive, as we do not need to cut the skin, which means we greatly reduce the risk of scarring. However, for people with a mole that goes deep into the skin, a laser might not be suitable.
Why choose The Clinic @ 78 for mole and skin tag removal?
At The Clinic @ 78, we take pride in our dermatology services. We know how moles and skin tags can lead to discomfort and embarrassment and want to help you feel more confident in your skin.
Our expert consultant dermatologists offer a thorough consultation to discuss your issue and examine your mole or skin tag. We will then work with you to create a bespoke treatment plan that covers all your concerns.
If you need to speak to a private dermatologist about a mole or skin tag, book a consultation today. Alternatively, call us on 01202 767000 for more information.
Resources for more information
The NHS shows what the different types of melanoma (skin cancer) look like. Visit this page to see how these differ from moles and skin tags.
The Skin Cancer Foundation further explains why you shouldn’t try to remove a mole at home.
Our blog covers what happens when you visit a dermatologist.
If you still aren’t sure of the difference between a mole and a skin tag, Healthline has a useful article that may help.
Medical News Today discusses the most popular, unproven home remedies for mole removal and the damage these remedies can do.
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