A wart is a raised bump on your skin. Human papillomavirus (HPV) is what causes them. Humans have been plagued by warts for thousands of years. Shakespeare mentioned them in his writings, and they have even been found on mummies that are 3,000 years old. In general, warts are not dangerous. However, they potentially can be quite painful, contagious and embarrassing.
Important Information Regarding Genital Warts
There are over 100 different kinds of HPV, which is the virus that causes warts. Most HPV types cause warts that are relatively harmless and appear on your feet or hands. However, there are also a couple of HPV strains that cause warts around, in and on your genitals. These genital warts in women may cause cervical cancer, which is a disease that is potentially fatal. Make sure to consult with a doctor right away if you suspect you have genital warts or might have been exposed to them.
There are five main kinds of warts. Each kind has its own distinctive appearance and shows up on a different body part.
Usually this type of wart grows on your toes and fingers. However, they can appear in other places as well. They have a rounded top and grainy, rough appearance. Common warts tend to be more a grayer shade than the skin that surrounds them.
This kind of wart grows on soles of feet. The grew into the skin, unlike other warts, inside of out of it. The way to tell whether you have a plantar wart or not is you’ll notice what looks to be a small hole on the bottom of your foot with hardened skin surrounding it. A plantar wart makes it uncomfortable to walk.
Usually this type of wart grows on the arms, thighs or face. These are small warts and not readily apparent. They have a flat top and may be sightly yellow, brownish or pink.
These warts grow around the nose or mouth and sometimes under the chin or on the neck. They are small and have the shape of a tag of skin or tiny flap. They have the same color as the skin surrounding them.
These warts ground around and under fingernails and toenails. They can affect nail growth and be painful.
Go to the doctor if:
Usually warts do go away without treatment. However, they are uncomfortable and ugly, so you might want to attempt to treat them at well. There are various treatments that you can find at a drugstore that many warts do respond well to.
Keep These Things In Mind:
With this type of treatment, concentrated cold air is sprayed on your wart. It kills the skin and lets you scrape the wart’s surface away. If you are wanting to quickly remove a wart, this type of treatment is a good choice. However, it can’t remove all warts because it isn’t strong enough.
These products have to be used every day, usually for a couple of weeks. This type of treatment works best if the wart is soaked in water for approximately 15 minutes before the treatment is applied. Salicylic Acid based products have been proven to work very effectively against warts if you follow the instructions of the product closely. At this time they offer the most effective wart removal available over the counter. Some products have additional ingredients to foster quicker wart removal and/or to prevent skin damage through the treatment.
Some individuals have been able to use duct tape to treat warts successfully. With this process, the wart is covered with duct tape for a couple of days. The wart is then soaked and rubbed in order to remove all of the dead skin. To work, you do need to do this procedure several times.
If at-home treatments do not take care of your wart problem, your doctor might be able to assist you. Remember to always consult with your doctor if there are warts on your feet and you have diabetes.
Liquid nitrogen can be used by your doctor to freeze your wart. This method usually does work well, although it can be somewhat painful. Several treatments might be needed. Freezing will cause a blister to form around and underneath the wart. Within approximately one week, this will lift the wart from your skin.
If a wart doesn’t respond to other treatments, then surgery might be considered. A surgical knife will be used by your doctor to cut the wart away or electricity will be used to burn it. The shots can be quite painful, so first you will need to get an anesthetic shot. Scarring might be caused by surgery.
Removing a wart might leave a scar and warts can end up spreading to other body parts. If possible try any of the at-home treatments first in order to minimize the risk of scarring due to surgery or other invasive procedures.
Warts are the visible signs of having been infected with specific strands of the HPV virus. Typically, the warts will eventually go away even if they are not treated. The body will either get rid of the virus through the immune system or the virus will lay dormant.
There is not saying how long the warts will last if they are not treated though. After being infected with the HPV virus the warts often appear within 1 to 6 months. With a normally healthy person, one can expect the warts to disappear by themselves within 3 to 6 months in about 25% of the infected people. This percentage increases to 65% after a 2 year period.
Genital warts as well as other kinds of warts will last about the same amount of time if not treated. Genital warts are usually more embarrassing and can be painful. Women can suffer from pain caused by genital warts during sexual intercourse.
Seriously, who would want to wait for 2 years or even longer to get rid of warts. There are easy to use treatments that are highlighted on this website and there’s no reason to wait until the warts eventually go away by themselves.
To prevent warts from forming and spreading to other areas of your body, follow these guidelines:
(image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/sloth_rider/)