Skin tags during pregnancy is a benign condition. Dermatologists generally don’t advice for their removal, as they cause absolutely no harm. In case there is a noticeable change in them or have become painful, the ideal option is to remove them.
The rice-grain looking hanging outgrowths on the skin surfaces are called skin tags. In appearance, they are small, smooth, and slightly wrinkled. The shape is somewhat irregular and they are soft to touch. Their color is either similar or slightly darker than the skin tone. They hang from the skin by a small stalk. They mostly occur on the skin that frequently rubs against clothing, jewelry, or another area of the skin.
The most common places of appearance are the folds of the neck, eyelids, armpits, groin folds, torso, upper chest (particularly beneath the breasts in female), and in the genitals. They are completely benign in nature and can occur in anyone. Nearly half of the population suffers from this problem. They are most prevalent in overweight adults approaching their middle ages. Even children or toddlers can develop them in the neck and underarms. Women, especially expecting mothers, are quite prone to it. Appearance of skin tags during pregnancy is a common phenomenon and generally do not shed off after childbirth.
Appearance during Pregnancy
Pregnancy skin tags can occur on any one of the above-mentioned body regions. Genital skin tags during pregnancy are the most common. The most likely place of their occurrence is the vulva, which is the fold in the outer layer of the vagina. The appearance of vaginal skin tags are the same as the normal ones. They are small, smooth skin folds, which are a little darker than the skin tone. Non-pregnant women can also develop these. In some females, their size increases during menstruation. After the menstrual period is over, the usual size is restored. Most females acquire them after pregnancy.
Genital, or more specifically vaginal skin tags, are easy targets for pathogenic microbes. Therefore, genital hygiene must be maintained and any fluid discharge should be cleaned from the surrounding areas. This would minimize the risk of microbial infection.
According to medical professionals, the most probable cause is the hormonal elevation during pregnancy. There is an overactive growth on the superficial layer of the skin. Skin tags are harmless and have nothing to do with any major medical complication. They produce pain only when they get twisted, inflamed, or rubbed against something rough. There is hardly anything you can do to prevent their occurrence. Though they are harmless, at times, they become annoying and irritating. If you notice any change in their shape, size, or color, or have a feeling of pain or discomfort, you must consult a medical practitioner and get the necessary treatment done.
The best treatment is their removal. They can be removed both during or after pregnancy. Dermatologists follow a standard method for this procedure. The process is simple and can be done in a few minutes. The tag is first frozen using liquid nitrogen and then cut off with a scissor. It can also be burned or cauterized instead of cutting off. Topical creams similar to “wart removal creams” are also effective in getting rid of them. The creams work by disintegrating the stalk that keeps them attached to the skin surface. Plant or chemical-based creams should be avoided, as there is always a risk of foreign substances penetration into the skin.
Women acquiring skin tags during pregnancy is quite common and is absolutely not dangerous. If you feel their presence annoying or they have become painful, you can easily get rid of them. Do consult a registered medical practitioner for this purpose.
Disclaimer: This HerHaleness article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.