Warts are mainly caused by viral skin infections. The wart causing virus is known as the human papillomavirus. It attacks the superficial skin layer to produce a thick callous growth that is subject to tenderness if located in an area that exacts pressure. Plantar warts develop on the sole of the foot known as the plantar surface. They have an incubation period that varies from months to years depending on the immune system of the affected person. Planters warts on feet affect all age groups but are more prevalent among children between 12 and 16 years and rare among adults. The main risk factors include:
- Skin trauma
- Weak immune system due to certain medications or illness
- Regular use of public showers
Causes of planters warts on feet:
As stated above, plantar warts are caused by human papilloma virus that affects the sole of the foot in the outer layer of the skin. There are many types of human papilloma virus but only a few cause warts on different parts of the body and mucous membrane. This virus grows in the warm, moist environments like the public swimming areas, shower floors and locker rooms. A person may contract the virus by walking bare footed around public gyms and pools. It can enter the body through cracks on dried skin, wet fragile skin caused by regular water exposure, and scrapes and cuts. When the human papilloma virus spreads from the original infection site, multiple plantar warts appear. They may appear in the form of:
- Several individual planter warts at different parts of the foot.
- Kissing planters warts: a pair of warts that appear at the point where two toes or the ball of foot and toe contact.
- Mosaic planters warts: these are clusters of warts that appear in the form of large, single lesions.
Symptoms of planters warts on feet:
- Inexplicable pain and tenderness at the foot while walking or standing.
- Foot pain that feels like a lump under the foot.
- Grayish or yellowish smooth surface at the surface of the foot.
- Foot and back pain that result from poor posture.
- Small clotted blood vessels known as black pinpoints or wart seeds.
- Presence of hard, thick callous on the foot. It represents an ingrown planter wart.
- Lesions that break off the normal ridges and lines at the skin of the feet.
How to remove planters warts on feet:
- Choose a salicylic acid product that contains the right concentration for your skin. Most plantar wart treatments contain 15 to 40 percent of salicylic acid.
- Apply salicylic acid to the affected area on the foot. If you do not experience any reactions within 24 hours, then the treatment is safe for you to use.
- Soak the affected foot in warm water for a few minutes before applying the salicylic acid. This helps to soften the skin hence making it easier for the medication to penetrate through the wart.
- Ensure that the treated part is covered with a bandage. This assists in killing the warts through suffocation: also to prevent discomfort and irritation.
- Soak the affected foot in warm water again and allow the skin to soften. Gently peel off dead skin to avoid applying treatment on dried skin.
Planters warts on feet can be painful to the extent of affecting a person’s daily activities. Though home remedies are effective, it is essential to see a dermatologist for further examination and assurance that the wart is fully treated.