Skin tags are a common flesh-colored skin growth that can occur anywhere on your body, although they typically appear on the chest, neck and underarms. People often confuse these with moles, which can be more pigmented and don’t generally stick out from the skin by a narrow stalk in the way that a skin tag does. Perhaps partly due to this confusion with moles, there are a number of myths about skin tags that just aren’t true.
1. Skin Tags Are an Early Sign of Skin Cancer
Skin tags are usually harmless, painless and symptomless, although some can cause discomfort, depending on the area of the body where they’re located. Skin tags are not a sign of skin cancer, nor do they increase your risk of developing skin cancer in the future.
2. Skin Tags Need to Be Removed
Since skin tags aren’t harmful, it’s not medically necessary to have them removed. Some people will opt to have a skin tag removed if it’s uncomfortable or for cosmetic reasons, but this is purely an elective procedure. If, however, you notice that your skin tag is bleeding, painful or growing quickly, you should consult your dermatologist to be sure that it’s not another more serious skin condition.
3. If You Remove Skin Tags, They’ll Spread
You can have your skin tags removed by a dermatologist if you so choose, but this will not cause new ones to form. Although it’s possible that you could eventually develop additional skin tags in the future, there’s no correlation between the removal of one and the growth of another.