What is a Plantar Wart?
Plantar warts are non-cancerous skin outgrowths on feet that are caused due to a viral infection on the topmost layer of the skin. In medical terms, they are known as “Verrucas”. Plantar warts can be really irritating sometimes. It is a usual problem that can occur to anybody. Plantar warts are brown or black, hard and flat or bumpy growths that mostly occur on the soles of the feet. They may also appear in clusters and are known as mosaic warts. These are harmless and usually go away themselves in a few days, but in some cases, warts can turn out to be too painful to tolerate, and may need immediate treatment. In comparison to adults, children get more prone to this problem.
Now, the question is how do you get plantar warts? Well, the most common reason for this skin disorder is a virus, called human papillomavirus (HPV), which may get into the skin through cuts or bruises. This virus is highly infectious and may spread through communal showers, public swimming pools, and even through touching. Individuals, who share athletic or gym facilities, or perform any group activity barefoot, such as yoga or martial arts, easily get infected with this virus. Sharing of personal items, like razors and towels also lead to this condition.
The main symptoms of plantar warts are:
- Tiny, hard, flat or bumpy growths on the soles of the feet, often accompanied by black dots in between.
- Hardening and thickening of the skin around the affected area.
- Lesions that barge in the ridges and normal skin lines of your feet.
- Pain on the bottom of the feet while walking or standing.
Natural Home Remedies for Plantar Warts
How to get rid of a plantar wart fast? Here are some home remedies to remove a plantar wart in a natural manner.
1. Duct Tape
Simply cover the wart with a duct tape after soaking it in warm water, and then exfoliating the wart-affected area. Cover the wart with the tape for about 6 days. Repeat the soaking process every time you remove the tape. Repeat this remedy for a few months, until the wart is totally gone.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
This is one of the best treatments for plantar warts. Soak a cotton ball in apple cider vinegar and apply it on the wart. Then, cover it with a duct tape. Replace it once in every few days. Don’t forget to soak the feet in warm water every time you remove the tape.
3. Banana Peel
Cover the wart by placing the inner part of banana peel and simply stick it with a tape.
4. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is another good home remedy for plantar warts on feet. Apply it frequently to remove the plantar warts on toe.
Crush some onion and apply its juice on the plantar wart. This is another easier method to remove the plantar warts.
6. Lemon Essential Oil
You can also apply a few drops of lemon essential oil on the plantar wart. Use it for a few days, continuously. This greatly helps in getting rid of the warts in some days.
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7. Aloe Vera Gel
Fresh aloe vera gel works well in removing the plantar warts from the feet. You need to apply it heavily as it is quickly absorbed by the skin. Apply it several times every day and cover it with a tape or bandage, until the wart dries off.
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Cut a thin slice of garlic and place it over the wart. Hold it on the wart by using a bandage. You can also press a garlic oil capsule on the plantar wart. Keep applying it for a month until the wart is completely removed. The anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of garlic help in removal of the plantar wart.
9. Salicylic Acid
The most common remedy to get rid of plantar warts is salicylic acid. There are many plantar wart-removal products available in the market that contains salicylic acid, such as Occlusal and Compound W. Soak your feet in lukewarm water for a few minutes. Then, remove the dead cells by using a pumice stone. Now, apply the solution containing salicylic acid on the wart. Repeat it every day for about 2 months. You will definitely feel the positive results.
Note- Prevent unaffected skin from getting in touch with the salicylic acid.
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10. Potato Skin
Take a potato and peel it. Now, use the inner part of the potato skin to rub on the wart. Practice it 2 times a day. The wart will fall off within 1-2 weeks. This remedy heals the wart in a natural manner.
11. Cold Water
Soak your foot in the cold water for 12-15 minutes. After that, dry it properly. This will kill the virus, alleviating the warts.
Homeopathic Treatment for Plantar Warts
Besides natural cures at home, one can also opt for over-the-counter and homeopathic treatments. Various ointments, like podophyllin, are also available for the plantar warts. Proper precautions need to be taken while using these ointments. Before undertaking homeopathic treatment, you should identify your symptoms well. Some of the prescribed homeopathic medicines are:
1. Graphites : It is helpful in treating corn-like warts on the bottom of the feet and palms.
2. Natrum muriaticum : It is an important remedy for warts.
3. Nicricum acidum : It is a good cure for gold-yellow or fissures, large warts that bleed or sting and itch on washing.
4. Thuja occidentalis : It is the most common treatment for several types of warts, especially mosaic warts on the feet.
Note- Consult a doctor for proper dosage.
Plantar Wart Remover
In order to get rid of this problem, plantar wart removers are also available in the market, like:
1. Dr. Scholls Clear Away Wart Remover : Its cushioning pad gives a quick relief from painful warts. The clinically proven removal system prevents the wart from spreading while healing in a more gentle way.
2. CVS Plantar Wart Remover : It is another wart remover available in the market. It contains salicylic acid, which is effective in healing the plantar warts.
Directions of usage of these wart removers are given on the packets.
Though plantar warts usually vanish with time, but as it is rightly said “Prevention is better than cure”, so, prevent this problem beforehand. There are certain preventive measures that can be taken in order to prevent the warts, such as:
1. Avoid Going Barefoot : Warts are really contagious and walking barefoot may easily catch the virus. A lot of public places, like pools, locker rooms, public showers, even the rugs or carpet at hotels, are a hub of millions of viruses. Therefore, wear footwear before going out.
2. Try Covering Your Cuts or Bruises : The easiest way for a virus to get into your skin is through cuts or wounds. So, always try to cover the bruise or cut with a duct tape.
3. Keep Your Feet Dry : Viruses easily flourish in damp or sweaty skin. Therefore, try to keep your feet dry every time you exercise or jog. If your feet are prone to sweating, then apply medicated foot powders in order to keep them dry and free from sweat.
4. Avoid Touching Frequently : Avoid touching the part, affected by the plantar wart as touching may spread it to others, and it may even re-infect you more.
5. Wear Clean and Dry Socks : Always wear laundered and dry socks. Change them every day.
6. Avoid Sharing Personal Items : Don’t use towels and socks of others as it may increase the chances of getting warts.
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Alice grew up in Los Angeles and currently lives in California, though she likes to visit home frequently. She graduated from a marketing specialist degree and worked at the core of outreach teams for more than 5 years.