What Are Plantar Warts?
Plantar warts are a growth on the skin, caused by a viral infection in the foot. While warts can develop all over the body, plantar warts are specifically related to the foot and can present in all shapes and sizes. This viral infection will cause tiny blood vessels to grow at the centre of the wart, often taking the appearance of dark spots. Typically, people will develop warts in areas of the foot that bear significant amounts of weight or pressure. The wart itself may initially feel like thickened skin and may feel painful when direct contact is made.
Other symptoms and signs of plantar warts include finding a small and rough lesion growing on the sole of your foot. Most commonly, warts are found on the heel, ball of the foot, or beneath the toes, as these are the spots that tend to undergo the most pressure on a daily basis. You may find that this lesion has a solid border around it and dark spots inside it, while the surrounding skin appears yellowish. Most plantar warts will be extremely noticeable when contrasted to the healthy skin around them, and any direct contact with shoes will bring on discomfort. Different types of warts include verruca vulgaris and cutaneous warts
Common Causes of Warts
The virus that causes warts is called ‘human papillomavirus’, or HPV. Human papillomavirus is a slow-acting virus, making plantar warts contagious. The virus can be transmitted through not only skin-to-skin contact but also through indirect contact. HPV virus thrives in moist, warm environments. When you walk barefoot over floor surfaces such as public showers or swimming pools or share shoes and socks with somebody else, you risk developing viral warts.
Not everybody who makes contact will end up developing plantar warts, but this is the most common cause of picking up the virus. HPV will attack the skin on the bottom of your feet, causing lesions to form and wart tissue to develop. Anyone can find themselves with a plantar wart, but you are especially at risk if you walk barefoot in public, wet environments or have cuts and damage over the skin of your foot.
Plantar Wart Treatment and Prevention
Fortunately, wart treatments are readily available and extremely popular. A podiatrist will aim to treat plantar warts swiftly through a wide range of different techniques. Getting rid of warts is crucial because although it is common that warts go away on their own with time, leaving them untreated may affect your immune system and cause significant pain. Some warts disappear after just a few treatments, while others may take several months to be resolved for good. Products such as liquid nitrogen and salicylic acid can be used for treatment and removal.
The best treatment is, of course, prevention. A podiatrist will be able to offer key advice to help avoid plantar warts from redeveloping in the future, but there are some standard ways you can protect your feet for many years to come. If you want to prevent warts, here are some ways to avoid particular risk factors of human papillomavirus:
- Keep the soles of your feet dry and clean
- Avoid moist and public environments such as pools, showers, and changing rooms
- Don’t walk barefoot in areas these shared floors
- Avoid skin contact with anyone who may have plantar warts
- Protect your body’s immune system
- Bandage and cover any cuts or openings on your foot skin
The Removal Process for Plantar Warts
For many people, the idea of getting warts removed is an intimidating notion. There isn’t any reason to worry about the process, however. Your local podiatrist will likely have removed countless warts over the course of their career, as this is one of the most common treatments performed in any podiatry clinic. Even laser treatment and surgical removal are nothing to fear, because modern technology has made this an extremely minor operation, performed very quickly. Untreated plantar warts will probably be causing pain in and around the wart itself. So, here are some of the treatment options for wart removal:
- Salicylic acid can be applied to progressively break down the wart
- Cryotherapy and liquid nitrogen can freeze plantar warts and destroy the infected skin within seconds, making removal quicker than ever
- Other mild acids can be used to burn away the tissue or plantar warts
- Laser treatment can tackle the plantar wart directly
- Minor surgical removal of plantar warts can be completed under local anaesthetic
- The hard outer layer of plantar warts can be removed using sharp debridement
Why Choose Midland Podiatry?
Experienced Podiatry Team
For over three decades now, the Midland Podiatry team has been working in this industry. When you come to our clinic, you benefit from significant knowledge, experience, and expertise in the world of podiatry.
You shouldn’t have to travel far and wide for exceptional podiatry care. Midland Podiatry is proud to bring top-quality care to our local communities, making essential services more accessible than ever.
Every patient deserves a treatment solution suited entirely to them. Our team prioritises unique, personalised treatment plans that take your preferences into account at every step.
Book an Appointment at Midland Podiatry to Eliminate Plantar Wart Pain
Plantar warts may make everyday activities like walking, exercising, and even sleeping painful. Any pressure, contact, or impact on the wart may cause significant pain that nobody deserves to put up with. Don’t suffer from your plantar warts in silence. With the help of the Midland Podiatry team, you may be able to undergo treatment for plantar warts designed specifically to suit your body and preferences.
Whether you need liquid nitrogen cryotherapy, salicylic acid, or surgical removal, we’re ready to lend a hand. From cutaneous warts to recalcitrant warts, our podiatrists can sort the situation out for you. Book an appointment today to diagnose your plantar warts and start the treatment journey.