Plantar Warts Be Gone!
By Dr. Tamar Ferreira, ND, Naturopathic Doctor
The other day I went to the gym and was all ready for my post-workout shower except that I forgot my flip flops for the shower stall. The thought of getting plantar warts from the communal shower made me hesitate long enough to delay my shower until I got home. Wearing flip flops in public showers and around pools is one way to minimize your chances of getting exposed and developing plantar warts.
Plantar warts are not dangerous but are a nuisance, especially when they recur over and over, and they are very contagious. Depending on their size and location, they can be very painful and affect the way you walk. They are caused by a type of human papillomavirus (HPV). However, not everyone who is exposed to the virus will develop warts. This highlights one important principle in naturopathic medicine, the importance of optimizing the health of the “terrain” or our body. When our body is healthy and our immune system strong, we are more likely to fight a virus and stop it in its tracks, many times even before we even develop symptoms!
We are more susceptible to developing plantar warts if we have cuts on our feet, if our skin is wet and softened, and if our immune system is compromised in one way or another. There are many topical treatments available to treat plantar warts today, both conventional or natural, and sometimes a few weeks of this topical treatment is all you need. However, if you are a recurrent sufferer, strengthening the immune system and addressing your susceptibility from the inside out might be the piece of the puzzle you are missing to get you out of that cycle.
Your immune system could be compromised through the use of antibiotics, certain medications, nutrient poor food, vitamin and mineral deficiencies, malabsorption, an imbalanced gut microbiome, or chronic stress. A naturopathic doctor could help you minimize recurrences (or speed up the healing process) by helping you implement a nutrient-rich diet, assessing for deficiencies (i.e. Vitamin A, Vitamin D, selenium, and zinc are important for proper immune function), recommending certain antiviral herbs and adrenal supportive supplements, or using certain homeopathic remedies.
Downtown Brampton Wellness Centre
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