If you’ve recently noticed that your child has a wart, you may be worried about where it came from – and be wondering how to treat the wart. Can you handle it yourself? Do you need to see a doctor?
Discover below answers to common questions you may have about pediatric warts.
What Are Warts? Where Do They Come From?
Warts are caused by a variety of different viruses in the human papillomavirus (HPV) family. They’re small, firm bumps on the skin, and are quite common in kids. They can be found anywhere on the body – but are the most common on the feet, around the fingernails, on the face, and occasionally near the knees.
HPV viruses can be passed by close physical contact – by touching something that someone with a wart touched, sharing a towel or bathmat, or by using a public shower without shower shoes.
Kids who have small cuts on their feet or hands – from not wearing shoes or biting their fingernails, for example – are more prone to warts. This is because the virus can easily enter the body through these cuts.
The best way to prevent transmission of warts is proper handwashing, and using waterproof shower shoes in public showers, pools and other areas where moisture and bare feet are common.
Do I Need To See A Doctor About Warts?
Most warts will go away on their own, but this can take several months or even years, in some cases. If the wart is embarrassing to your child, causing discomfort, or is interfering with their activities, it should be removed. There are a variety of ways doctors can deal with warts:
- Prescription or over-the-counter medicines can be applied to the wart to remove it over time
- A light electrical current can be used to “burn” the wart away and remove it
- Cryosurgery can be used, which involves freezing the wart off with one or more liquid nitrogen treatments
- Laser treatment can be used to destroy wart tissue and remove it
The right option for you and your child depends on their wart and your preferences. Discuss your options with your pediatrician to choose the best treatment for your child.