How to Get Rid of Plantar Warts

What are Plantar Warts?

Warts are skin infections caused by the human papillomavirus or HPV that can affect various parts of your body. Plantar warts appear around the soles of your feet. It is caused by the HPV entering your feet through tiny cuts or other weak spots found at the bottom of your feet. Although warts disappear on their own, it is necessary to get plantar warts treated if they cause any major pain or discomfort.

A plantar wart is tiny in size but can sometimes grow bigger. If plantar warts occur in groups, then they are known as mosaic warts. Plantar warts are contagious and can be spread if you come in contact with objects used by someone who has warts on their hands and feet. For example, plantar warts can spread if you wear footwear which was used by someone who had warts on their feet.

There are more chances of you developing plantar warts if you have a weakened immune system. If your plantar warts persist, you can try out the medication or the home remedies mentioned in this article.

Plantar Warts Symptom

It is easy to spot early symptoms of plantar warts in your body. Plantar warts appear at the soles of your feet. They are rough and grainy in appearance and can be found at the base of your toes or heels. The area around which warts appear will have lesions, and the skin around the wart will be hard and thick causing you pain when walking or standing. Plantar warts disappear on their own, but in case they persist you can try out various medications or home remedies.

What Causes Plantar Warts?

Plantar warts are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) on the soles of your feet. The HPV will enter your body if you have a weak immune system. Plantar warts are contagious; there are always chances of getting warts on your feet if you are walking barefoot around public washrooms or swimming pools. It is advisable to wear shoes or slippers on your feet when you are using shared or public washrooms.

Where Can Plantar Warts Show Up?

There are various types of warts that can occur at different parts of your body. Plantar warts grow at the soles of your feet. Plantar warts are named after plantar fascia, the thick tissue at the bottom of your feet.

Plantar Warts Pictures

When to See a Doctor

You normally don’t have to visit a doctor in case of plantar warts because they often disappear on their own. However, if plantar warts cause too much pain or discomfort while walking or standing, it is advisable to visit a doctor. A plantar wart can become a serious ailment if:

  • There is bleeding and the wart changes its color and appearance
  • The wart persists even after trying medicines and home remedies
  • The pain is too unbearable and it interferes with your daily activities
  • The wart reappears after having removed it

Children are susceptible to getting plantar warts as they have a developing immune system that may not be able to fight HPV. If your child is suffering from plantar warts and the medicines seem to have no effect, then it is recommended to visit the doctor.

Plantar Warts Treatment – How to Get Rid of Plantar Warts

You can get rid of plantar warts using ointment, spray and even homeopathic tablets. Here are a few pain-free and instant relief solutions you can try for plantar warts:

Freezing Treatments (Dr. Scholls Freeze Away Wart Remover): Use Dr. Scholl’s Freeze Away Wart Remover for treating plantar warts. Freeze the wart affected area by spraying Dr. Scholls on it. Freezing the wart breaks it down, your body’s tissue then regenerates new tissue that replaces the wart tissue.

Wart Remover Salicylic Acid – Compound W – Compound W is a wart treatment cream that has salicylic acid, which is proven to be effective in removing common and plantar warts. Apply the cream on any wart affected area to remove warts painlessly.

Tea Tree Oil – Tea tree oil has a strong smell and antimicrobial properties that make it an effective treatment for warts. Warts spread on your body if you have a weak immune system, tea tree boosts your body’s immune system that helps reducing warts.

Wart Stick – The Wart Stick Remover is an ointment consisting of salicylic acid that helps in treating common and plantar warts.

Natural Home Remedies to Get Rid of Plantar Warts

If you are looking for natural and safe home remedies to get rid of plantar warts, try out these cheap and easy options.

Green Tea

Green tea is rich in antioxidants and is an excellent solution for skin care remedy. 2-3 glasses of green tea every day will increase the antioxidant supply to your skin and reduce warts.

Instead of discarding a used green tea teabag, you can also apply it on the wart-infected skin. Place the tea bag on the wart for 10-15 minutes and repeat the process thrice a day along with drinking green tea.

Green tea reduces skin damage and repairs your skin by making it glow from within. There are also polyphenols in green tea that reduces skin inflammation.

Duct Tape

Duct tape occlusion is the process of removing warts using duct tape. In this method, you cover the wart with a duct tape, by covering the wart you prevent it from getting air and sun exposure. Remove the duct tape once a week and wash the affected area. Keep the area exposed overnight and reapply the duct tape again in the morning.

To speed up duct tape occlusion, you can apply salicylic acid on the wart and cover it with duct tape.

Garlic

Garlic has medicinal properties that help fight fungal infections. Allicin, an anti-viral component present in garlic makes it of great medicinal value.

  1. To remove warts using garlic, clean up the affected area with soap and water and keep the area dry.
  2. Crush a clove of garlic and place the crushed garlic on the affected area.
  3. Cover the area with a bandage or a duct tape. Make sure that the crushed garlic is not in contact with any unaffected area or any part of the skin that has cuts or wounds.
  4. Apply fresh cut garlic to the wart-affected area every day. The healing process will take 3-4 weeks.

Apple Cider Vinegar

The vinegar in apple cider vinegar acts like salicylic acid. It burns the infected area and treats the infected skin causing the wart to fall off. The irritation you get from applying vinegar stimulates your immune system’s ability to fight the wart.

When applying apple cider vinegar, mix two parts apple cider vinegar with one-part water and soak a cotton ball in the solution. Apply the cotton ball on the wart and cover it with a bandage or a tape. Leave the cotton ball overnight on the wart-infected area. Remove the cotton ball and the bandage and repeat the process until the wart falls off.

Should I Get Surgery to Remove Plantar Warts?

If plantar warts are not removed by application of medicines or home remedies, you can get a minor surgery to remove warts. Surgeries for removing warts are uncommon, however, if the plantar warts are large and painful then it is an option you can choose.

Your doctor will cut off the wart from your skin, since this is a painful process your doctor will first numb the skin. There is always a chance of scarring when performing surgeries to remove warts, hence only choose this option if all other treatments have failed.

There are laser treatment options also available, however, there is only limited evidence of this method succeeding.

Are Plantar Warts Contagious?

Plantar warts are contagious like any other warts. If you are using common washrooms or public swimming pools there are chances of you getting warts through someone who is infected. Warts are common among people who have a weaker or developing immune system, hence they are more common among young children.

Plantar Warts Prevention

Plantar warts can spread if you have a weak immune system. However, you can prevent yourself from getting warts by following these steps:

Wear Footwear When Using Public Areas

Wear shoes or proper footwear when you are using shower rooms in the gym, public swimming pool or washrooms.

Keep Your Feet Clean

Wash your feet thoroughly with anti-bacterial soap or disinfectant whenever you have visited an area from where the virus can spread. If you have plantar warts, do not pick on warts as there are chances of them spreading. Wash your hands if you touch a wart, as warts may spread around areas that have moisture.

Avoid Shaving Around Warts

Be more careful with your grooming when you have warts. Shaving with a razor may cause the wart to break and spread to other parts of your skin. Avoid shaving, brushing or clipping around areas that have warts.

Use Clean Tools for Pedicure

Plantar warts have chances of spreading through pedicure. Ask your pedicurist to use cleaner or disinfected tools before they do a pedicure on your feet as warts are contagious.

What Happens if You Cut off a Wart?

Plantar warts can be painful, it can become a problem when you are trying to walk. You can try removing a plantar wart by applying ointments or home remedies, even surgery is an option you can turn to if nothing works.  But cutting off a plantar wart is not recommended for the following reasons:

It Can Lead to Scarring

Cutting off a wart not only causes bleeding but also a permanent scar on your body. Using proper medication can remove warts from your body without leaving any traces.

 It Causes Bleeding and Pain

Warts are sensitive and connected to your skin, trying to pick off a wart can result in excessive bleeding and pain.

It Can Cause Infection

Cutting a wart may cause wounds which later can result in infections. It is advisable to use medicines to treat a wart.

Do Removed Warts Grow Back?

Most warts disappear after proper treatment is given. Sometimes it may take months or years for a wart to disappear. But there are chances that a wart may reappear on your body if the HPV still remains.

Wart Removed? Aftercare Help & Advice

To prevent plantar warts from spreading or recurring ensure you boost up your immune system and keep your feet clean.

Eat Healthy to Strengthen Immune System

Follow a healthy diet, eat a lot of green, leafy vegetables like spinach and kale that are high in B-vitamins and calcium. Broccoli, tomatoes and bell pepper that are high in antioxidants strengthen your skin’s immunity and help your body fight HPV.

Fruits are rich in antioxidants and vitamin-C that helps improve your immune system to fight warts. Blueberries and cherries are high in antioxidants and good for your diet.

Avoid Caffeine and Processed Food

Try to avoid caffeine, alcohol, and tobacco as they are known to have a detrimental effect on your skin.  Avoid processed food that contains unhealthy fats and is high in sugar. Baked goods such as white bread, donuts, and cake should be had in moderation as it contains unhealthy trans-fat.

Take Care of Your Feet

Keep your feet clean. Use clean socks and shoes. Always wear footwear when you are using public washrooms or accessing swimming pool areas as plantar warts are contagious. When doing pedicure, ensure you are using clean and disinfected tools on your feet.

Warts vs. Skin Tags

Warts

Warts are caused by the human papillomavirus or HPV. Plantar warts are painful lumps that can be found on the soles of your feet. Warts are known to affect various parts of your body and are highly contagious. Warts mostly affect children, teens and young adult as they have a developing immune system. Warts often go away on their own but as they are contagious there are various over-the-counter medicines and home remedies that you can try. People also opt for surgery in case of genital warts which can be painful and uncomfortable.

Skin Tags

Skin tags or acrochordons are caused in areas where the skin surfaces rub together forming creases. It can be found in the neck, armpit or groin areas and may also appear on the eyelids. Skin tags are tiny, flesh-colored or brown goths that hang from the skin surface. Skin tags mostly occur in middle-aged or older adults. As skin tags do not cause any irritation or discomfort, medical treatment is not necessary. However, if a skin tag is located on the face or any area that causes discomfort, you can visit your doctor’s clinic to get it removed.

What Are the Other Types of Warts?

Apart from plantar warts, there are other warts that caused by HPV that affect various parts of the human body.

Flat Warts: Flat warts grow on your arms, face, or thighs. They cannot be noticed as they are small. They are pink, brown or light yellow.

Filiform Warts: Filiform warts are the color of your skin and commonly grow on the face, especially near the eyelids or the lips.

Periungual Warts: Periungual warts can be quite painful as they grow under the toenails and fingernails.

Genital Warts: These are warts that occur around the genital area.

Common Warts: Common warts are small, grainy skin growths caused by HPV that is grown on hands, fingers, and toes.

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