QUESTION: How can my child avoid getting unsightly and painful warts on his or her feet?

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Warts are the most common viral infection of the skin. Plantar Warts specifically affect the feet as they grow on the plantar surface (the sole of the foot). Plantar Warts are most common among children and produce symptoms in areas of pressure and friction.

Summer is a rampant wart season, with barefoot children running around wet surfaces. Some possible ways to prevent exposure would be to avoid walking barefoot, using shower thongs or sandals in public shower rooms, changing shoes and socks daily and no sharing, keeping your feet clean and dry, and avoiding direct contact with warts from other people or from other parts of the body. Many of these are also ways to prevent Athlete’s Foot.

To avoid spreading the warts, don’t scratch them. Warts easily spread to small cuts and scratches. Cover all warts with waterproof tape in wet environments to avoid infecting yourself or others.

Tell-tale signs to look for on areas of pressure of the foot would be localized pain, warty lesions or smooth surfaces with a gray-yellow or brown color.
There are some over-the-counter remedies, which you may opt to try. If they fail to resolve within a short period of time, it is time to seek medical attention. You don’t want to risk complications by delaying treatment. A doctor can usually diagnose a Plantar Wart by observing it, although a tissue sample could be analyzed.

Family Foot & Ankle Center of Central Jersey provides comprehensive care for infants, children, teenagers, adults, and seniors. For more information on Plantar Warts and other foot or ankle problems, feel free to contact me:

Dr. Holli Alster
Family Foot & Ankle Center of Central Jersey

600 Bridge Plaza Drive, Manalapan