Plantar Warts

These are Warts on the soles of the feet.

What to look for

  • bumpy growths on the soles of the feet shaped like a pyramid with the point on the surface or above it.

  • pinpoint bleeding from warts when they are scratched.

  • pain in the soles of the feet when standing or walking.

Plantar warts are tough growths that appear on the soles of the feet. Normal standing and walking creates extreme pain as the pressure forces them into the foot. Like all warts, they are harmless and will eventually go away even without treatment, but in most cases they are too painful to ignore. Plantar warts that grow together in a cluster are known as mosaic warts.

Also See Warts

Causes

Plantar warts are caused by a virus that enters the skin through tiny cuts or abrasions. The warts may not appear for weeks or months after the initial exposure. Plantar warts are contagious and normally spread in public places such as swimming pools, gyms or communal showers.

Traditional Treatment

You can take your pick from numerous remedies both conventional and alternative. Deciding how to treat your plantar wart may depend on your ability to tolerate the pain that the various treatments can inflict. Conventional treatment focuses on removal, while alternative approaches emphasise gradual remission. Never scrape or cut a wart yourself.

Your doctor may use several different options in removing the wart. Burning, freezing and surgical removal are more aggressive options for more severe conditions.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

From the alternative viewpoint you will need to enhance your immune system in order to stop re-occurrences of the wart virus as well as applying other substances directly onto the wart to remove it.

Aromatherapy - Two drops of essential lemon oil in 10 drops of cider vinegar may help remove plantar warts: Apply daily and cover during the day with an adhesive bandage, but leave the wart exposed at night. Two drops of essential lemon oil in 10 drops of cider vinegar may help remove plantar warts: Apply daily and cover during the day with an adhesive bandage, but leave the wart exposed at night.

Or you can put a drop of tea tree oil on the centre of the wart daily and bandage it. Continue treatment until the wart goes away, which may take several weeks.

You can try strengthening your immune system by massaging your legs with the essential oils of rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis), geranium (Pelargonium odoratissimum), or juniper (Juniperus communis), or a blend of any two, using long strokes from ankles to thighs.

Herbal Therapies  - Various herbal remedies are recommended for removing warts. Whichever herbal remedy you try, first protect the surrounding skin with petroleum jelly and cover the treated wart with a clean bandage. Repeat daily until the warts are gone. Various herbal remedies are recommended for removing warts. Whichever herbal remedy you try, first protect the surrounding skin with petroleum jelly and cover the treated wart with a clean bandage. Repeat daily until the warts are gone.

  • Apply the juice from dandelion stems morning and evening.

  • Put a clove of raw garlic or a drop or two of garlic oil on the wart twice daily.

  • Apply a few drops of yellow cedar, available in either oil or tincture form, to the wart twice daily.

Dietary Considerations

Improve your diet in order to stop recurrences of the virus. Foods high in vitamin A (such as… eggs, cold-water fish, onions, garlic, and dark green and yellow vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, squash, and carrots) will help sustain your immune system, as will yogurt.

Supplements of Vitamin A, E zinc, potassium, chloride, calcium, L-Lysine, freeze-dried liver tablets and garlic.

Personal Care

  • Try an over-the-counter topical medication that contains salicylic acid, which is best absorbed by the skin after a bath, a shower, or a soak in warm water. Protect the healthy skin around your warts with petroleum jelly or nail polish.

  • Cut or scrape off some of the white material from the inside of a banana peel, preferably from a green banana, since it is said to have more of the enzymes that help fight the wart-causing virus. Apply a piece of the material to the wart before going to bed, and cover with first-aid tape. Repeat nightly until the condition improves.

  • Apply vitamin E twice daily or vitamin A nightly; open a capsule of the vitamin, apply the oil to the wart, and cover with a bandage. Continue applications until the wart goes away.

Prevention

Protect yourself against exposure to the virus that causes plantar warts by wearing thongs, or rubber swimming shoes whenever you visit a public pool or use a communal shower.

When to seek further professional advice

  • the area becomes red, hot, painful, and tender after treatment