Warts, although not a popular topic to discuss, are incredibly common, and most people will develop one at some point in their life. They are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV), the same virus that can cause certain types of cancers, such as cervical and throat cancer. However, there are over 100 different strains of HPV, and the strains causing warts are non-cancer causing. Plantar warts, a type of wart that can be found on the feet, is generally self-limiting and is not a severe health condition. Because they are typically found on the bottom of the feet, the wart grows inward.
Plantar warts are relatively easy to distinguish because they have black needle-point dots within the wart. The black dots are cauterized blood vessels, and they are called wart seeds by the medical community. There can be associated pain with the wart when walking or standing. If this is the case, a visit to the doctor may be required to relieve the pain. Treatment options include cryotherapy, a minor extraction via a scalpel, or salicylic acid. However, if the wart is not causing discomfort, as stated previously, it will usually go away on its own. Plantar warts develop when the virus enters the body. The most common route of transmission is through cuts or scrapes on the bottom of the feet. The virus is commonly transmitted in the locker room, where the environment is moist and damp. Some people will not develop a response to the virus, but some will go on to form a plantar wart.
To prevent this kind of wart, wear sandals in the locker room and on pool decks. Also, keep your feet clean and dry. For example, if sweat profusely, make sure to change your socks regularly to prevent bacterial growth. Plantar warts are contagious, so do not use the same nail clippers or pumice stones. Also, do not pick at the wart as this can cause excessive bleeding.
If you currently have a plantar wart, try these holistic remedies at home. Let's review them below.
1. Over-the-Counter Peeling Medication
1. Some products are available over the counter that can provide small doses of salicylic acid via a patch or liquid. The patches cover the wart and slowly give the medicine over 24 to 48 hours. The liquid medications need to be changed more frequently.
2. Some people have good results with these medications, and some people do not see results.
3. A doctor can provide a prescription for salicylic acid at a stronger dose, which may be more effective.
2. Over-the-Counter Freezing Sprays
1. Similar to cryotherapy in the doctor's office, there are freezing sprays available over the counter.
2. Generally, the spray contains a liquid nitrogen product that puts a barrier over the wart. The wart should fall off within a few weeks to months of using the product daily.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar
1. Another method, although it is not backed necessarily by science, is apple cider vinegar.
2. To utilize this treatment method, place an apple cider vinegar soaked cotton ball onto the wart twice a day.
3. The anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties found in apple cider vinegar help to kill the virus caused by HPV.
These remedies are suggestions, and if you are not achieving the desired results, schedule an appointment with a podiatrist at Shifa4U. If you are in considerable pain or if the wart is impairing your ability to walk, bypass the suggested remedies, and speak with a doctor today.