Warts are usually small, rough growths, occurring most frequently on hands and feet, but they can grow on other locations as well. Warts can resemble a cauliflower or a solid blister. Warts are caused by a viral infection, the human papilloma virus. There are about 10 different varieties of warts, but the most common ones are largely considered harmless. It is possible to get warts from others as they are known to be contagious. They usually vanish after a few months, but sometimes can last for years and can emerge again. There are many medical methods to get rid of warts, such as freezing them with liquid nitrogen and burning off using laser therapy, but you might like to try some of grandma’s age-old remedies, listed below.
Check out some of these home remedies to get rid of warts:
- Stick a piece of gaffer tape or duct tape over the wart on your skin, and leave it there for six days. Some studies have shown that gaffer tape is more effective on warts than cryotherapy (using liquid nitrogen to freeze them off). After taking off the tape, soak your skin in water for a few minutes, then scrape the area with a pumice stone, and leave it uncovered for a night. Apply a fresh piece of tape the next morning, and repeat the procedure until the wart on your skin has disappeared.
- Crush some fresh garlic and apply it directly to the wart and wrap it with a bandage. The caustic effect of the garlic should make the wart on your skin vanish within a week’s time. Apply fresh garlic and bandage every morning, and avoid contact with healthy surrounding skin. You can also protect the surrounding skin by applying petroleum jelly to it.
- Soak some cotton in vinegar and tape it over the wart with a fabric dressing strip for 1-2 hours daily.
- Break a dandelion stem and squeeze out some of the juice onto the wart. Do it everyday. The dandelion sap may be a little irritating, but it will stimulate your immune system to take care of the wart.
- Take a few vitamin C tables and grind them into a powder. Mix water and make a paste out of it. Dab it over the wart and cover the affected skin with band-aid. Since the tablets are very acidic, it will help to wear the wart away, and even fight the virus itself.
- Apply some lemon essential oil or tea-tree oil to the wart on your skin everyday. They have anti-viral properties that can help in removing the warts off your skin. Apply the oil neat with a cotton bud as often as you wish during the day.
- A common remedy is to rub a freshly cut slice of raw potato over the wart. (There are some people who say you will need to bury the piece of potato afterwards, or it won’t work, but there are others who disagree. Anyway, there’s no harm in trying.)
- Vitamin E oil and Cod liver oil too are said to be effective against warts. Once a day you can break open a vitamin E capsule and apply the oil to the wart.
If you are not sure whether a skin lesion is a wart or not, let the doctor decide. You need to rule out skin cancer, and to make sure you don’t use wart remedies on a corn or a mole. If either you or your partner have genital warts, you would be advised to use condoms and have regular pap smears.