As a parent, you may be well aware of the many things that children bring home from school and play. This can include rocks, plants, animals, and, worst of all, illnesses and other health conditions. It is well-known that kids are notorious for being dirty, sticky, and sick, thanks to their frequent interactions with other children. One of the most common things you can catch from them? Plantar Warts!
What Are Plantar Warts?
Plantar warts (also known as mosaic warts) are raised bumps or skin growths that form on the bottom of the foot caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). Plantar warts grow into the skin rather than outward from the infection site. They are usually very hard on the surface and can be painful when touched. Depending on how the virus contacted the foot, you may find them on the heels, soles, and other feet areas.
Plantar warts can be very painful, especially when placing weight on a foot. Thankfully, a plantar wart is not dangerous to the health of the individual who contracts them, but they are very annoying and often uncomfortable. They are also quite contagious.
If you have cuts on the sole of your foot, the HPV virus can easily find its way into that opening. The plantar wart will appear as a small hole or lesion about the size of an orange on your sole. The location typically happens near either heels and toes-especially at their base. Around the plantar wart, you will see some common signs of infection, including very tough and thick skin and small black dots or pinpoints, which are tiny blood vessels.
What Causes Plantar Warts in Kids?
Kids often walk barefoot on the various surfaces where they walk. This can include their own homes, playgrounds, swimming pools, parks, locker rooms, and other locations around the Saratoga Springs area. When other children walk barefoot in these locations and have the virus already on their feet, the virus can easily spread to your child and appear as a wart on their foot.
If your kid has any open sores or dry and cracked skin on their feet, they mustn’t walk barefoot in public places where the human papillomavirus may be hiding. The skin is also more vulnerable directly after having a bath or coming out of a pool.
To ensure their overall health, take precautions to prevent the acquisition of plantar warts and their accompanying pain and discomfort. Be sure their feet are always clean and dry, their socks and shoes are changed, and they have some barriers such as sandals or shoes between their feet and public surfaces.
Is a Plantar Wart on a Child’s Foot Contagious?
Yes! When there is an active infection of plantar warts on a child’s foot, it is quite contagious. Parents aware of the outbreak on their children’s feet need to follow care instructions from their doctors or podiatrists to prevent the HPV virus from spreading to others or getting worse on their own child’s foot.
Treatment will be important to provide pain relief to your child. Patients dealing with a wart should use caution when walking in public and keep their feet and the surrounding tissue clean and dry.
How Do You Treat Warts on Kids’ Feet?
There are various ways to eliminate plantar warts on your children’s feet. Depending on the overall well-being and health of your children, you should take caution in using a certain treatment over another. Contact a podiatrist such as ours at Rogers Foot & Ankle Institute to ensure that the treatment you choose is appropriate for your child.
Our doctors at Rogers Foot & Ankle Institute recommend any of the following treatment methods for removing plantar warts on your children’s feet:
- Cryotherapy: Essentially, cryotherapy is freezing the wart off of your foot. It is usually painless, but kids may find the cold sensation uncomfortable. It can be done professionally or using an over-the-counter product which may require up to 5 applications over two weeks.
- Chemical peels and cauterizations: A very effective method of removing plantar warts is using salicylic acid to remove the wart within 3 to 6 weeks. Other topical treatments do not use salicylic acid, which utilizes zinc, silver nitrate, cantharidin, or a smoke box that uses burnt medicinal leaves.
- Duct tape: Some people have reported that duct tape has effectively covered the wart for 5 to 6 days, followed by a soak and scrape technique. This is not as conclusively effective as the previous methods above.
- Time: Eventually, plantar warts will go away independently, but this can take up to 2 years. Most patients, children or adults, will not want to wait so long for their warts to disappear on their own, but it is an option for wart sufferers.
- Surgery: In the most extreme situations, surgical procedures can be employed by an experienced podiatrist, but this is generally reserved for the most severe circumstances and is not the go-to treatment.
If your child is suffering from plantar warts, contact our expert podiatrists at Rogers Foot & Ankle Institute to learn more about removal and treatment.
Ways to Prevent Plantar Warts for Children
Your kids need to know that plantar warts are serious and contagious. They should be aware of the ways to prevent catching them and what to do when they do contract warts.
Some reliable ways to prevent contracting the infection include:
- Avoid direct contact with a wart.
- If contact is made, immediately wash the area with soap and water.
- Keep your kids’ feet clean and dry as much as possible.
- Change socks daily and rotate shoes worn regularly.
- Always wear sandals in public showers or swimming pools.
- Learn about the cleaning processes and general health information at public locations like a swimming pool to make sure that all precautions are taken to prevent the spread of warts
If you believe that your kid may have contracted plantar warts or is showing symptoms on their body, contact a foot and ankle care doctor at Rogers Foot & Ankle Institute for a diagnosis and treatments for your patient.
Contact Our Saratoga Springs Foot and Ankle Specialists
When you or your child is suffering from the pain of plantar warts, contact our podiatrist at Rogers Foot & Ankle Institute. We can provide a diagnosis and show you how we treat the condition. Call us at 801-756-4200 to schedule your appointment today for the best possible treatments.