What to Know About Plantar Warts

Plantar warts can be harmless most of the time but it can lead to discomfort and frustration especially if you are walking or standing for long periods of time. You have to understand what causes this and what the treatment options are so that you know how to protect yourself.

Plantar warts are caused by HPV or the human papillomavirus. The virus can enter your body through small breaks, cuts or abrasions on the skin. When it is inside the body, the virus can be dormant for weeks or even months before it manifests as a visible wart. These are small and grainy lesions that have a rough texture. They can appear as a single wart or a cluster. The size can vary as well. There are pinhead size warts as well as warts that can grow to the size of a pea. There can be thickened skin around the wart and this is called a callus. When this is there, it can make it quite difficult to detect the presence of a wart. You will feel discomfort or pain when you are standing or walking is the wart is located on a weight bearing area of your foot. Sometimes there can be back specks or dots within the wart. These are small blood vessels that have become trapped inside. They can also be tender to the touch. Not every growth on your feet is a wart as there are many conditions such as calluses, corns etc. that can have the same appearance of a wart. If you have a growth on your foot that you are unsure about, you can visit a podiatrist to learn more.

There are some risk factors for developing these. You should not walk barefoot in public spaces such as communal showers, swimming pools or gym locker rooms. The virus thrives in these areas. And if there are cuts or scrapes in your feet, these can provide an entry point to the virus. You should also avoid sharing personal items like towels and shoes with individuals that have plantar warts as they are contagious. If you are wondering what are treatments for plantar warts?, there are many options that can be considered. There are over-the-counter wart treatments that have salicylic acid and you can apply this directly to the wart so that the lesion can dissolve over time.

Cryotherapy is where liquid nitrogen is applied to the wart so that it can be frozen.

This will be performed by a healthcare professional such as a podiatrist in a clinical setting. Warts can also be surgically removed especially if they are large or do not respond to other treatments. Some surgical options are laser therapy and excision. There are certain steps you can take to prevent plantar warts. You need to have good foot hygiene and this means washing your feet every day and thoroughly drying it. You need to wear flip-flops in public places and avoid walking barefoot on damp surfaces. To fight off infections, you need to have a strong immune system and this means having a healthy lifestyle. It includes maintaining a balanced diet, exercising regularly and getting sufficient sleep. You can also look into stress management techniques.