Are plantar warts contagious and if so, what should I do about it?
The short answer is yes, plantar warts are contagious. However, before you make the impulsive decision to wear socks for the rest of your life it is important to understand some of the finer details on how this infection is transmitted.
It is important to note first off that everyone’s immune system responds differently to HPV or Human Papillomavirus Infections such as plantar warts. As a result, one person might easily be able to pick up the infection while another might be rather resilient to the infection.
How do plantar warts spread?
By far the easiest way to spread plantar wart is through the skin to skin transmission. Touching the infected area against the skin of another person’s skin will likely cause the infection to spread. However, given that the infection usually is not transmitted this way since plantar warts usually develop on areas such as the feet, this is an unlikely occurrence. Most people instead contract the disease by walking on surfaces that have already been exposed to the infection. Since plantar wart thrives in dark, moist and warm conditions, it is common for people to contract the disease by walking barefoot around public pools, locker room, and saunas. Due to the conditions of these settings, they are prime breeding grounds for viruses.
Also, it is important to keep in mind that you are more susceptible to catching the virus when you have a weak immune system or if you have caught the infection before.
How to avoid contracting plantar warts
1. Avoid walking barefoot in public pools spas and locker rooms. It is best to use sandals or flip flops when walking around these areas. This way there is an extremely small chance you contract the virus.
2. Keep your feet dry. Be sure to wear moisture wicking socks at all times. You can even use baby powder in your socks to prevent moisture from festering. Any amount of dampness surrounding your feet can spur the growth of plantar warts. Wearing close-toed shoes that don’t get too much air circulation or exposure can also aid the growth of the infection.
3. Refrain from using the same towels socks, or shoes, with another person.
4. Avoid contact with others that you know have contracted the virus.
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