Plantar warts are a painful nuisance, but after finding a treatment that works for you they will finally begin to die off. Identifying a dead or dying wart can prove to be difficult for people who don’t know what it looks like. Naturally, a dead plantar wart can look differently based on the method of treatment used. Learning the signs of a dead wart is beneficial so you know when you can stop spending time and resources attempting to kill it further.
Table of Contents
Dying plantar warts: What are they?
Dying plantar warts are plantar warts that have reached the end of their lifespan and are essentially healing or going away for good. This can happen completely naturally after your body heals or through some manner of treatment. For information about the various plantar wart treatments, see this article. Regardless of how it occurs your dying plantar wart has some obvious features that can clue you in to its demise. These painful warts are always located on the feet, typically the bottom or on your toes and thus can cause serious pain when walking. However, the lack of pain does not mean the wart is completely dead.
A dead plantar wart is when all parts of your plantar wart are defeated. Warts that are completely dead often fall out and die, leaving a plantar wart hole. Often people stop worrying about warts the moment the pain ceases, which can be a mistake. A painless wart can still go on living and spreading if it is not, in fact, dead. Learn what causes plantar warts here. The assumption of death about a simply injured wart means it can continue to grow, spread and essentially return again and again.
Dead plantar warts:
- Are incapable of infecting other parts of your skin.
- Cause no satellite warts nearby.
- Do not cause pain.
- Surrounded by healthy skin.
Risk factors for dead plantar warts
The risk factors that come with dead plantar warts can be separated into those for a dying wart and those for a wart that is 100% dead. With a dying wart, your biggest risk is ending a treatment too early. A wart technically only needs one, living and infected cell to continue to grow and spread so you must ensure it is all or nothing when it comes to death.
Another risk of a dying wart is so much injury to surrounding skin you cause additional infections. Often in the desperation to kill a wart, sufferers cause a great deal of damage to otherwise healthy skin surrounded the wart, making it raw and prone to be infected. In this case, you may have sent your wart to its grave but now suffer from another bacterial infection or similar problem.
Take the risk of infection seriously, especially if you suffer from diabetes or immune system impacting health conditions such as HIV. Failure to prevent or immediately treat infections in these cases can have serious consequences.
For a plantar wart that is entirely dead the risk factors are rather rare and few in number. The primary risk is just setting yourself up for another plantar wart by continuing to use infected clothing, shoes and bandages. Also as mentioned previously, your dead plantar wart can fall out or be removed which leaves a hole in your foot. If cut out, as opposed to falling out, the risks of this hole being susceptible to infection are quite high. Luckily what you can do to avoid both of these risks are the same.
The steps are:
- Keep healing plantar wart holes covered.
- Avoid using socks and sneakers that haven’t been washed since your wart started dying.
- Keep your feet as clean and dry as possible.
- Apply Neosporin to any plantar wart holes or raw skin.
- Use shower sandals at any public showers.
Diagnosis of a dead or dying plantar wart
Identifying when your wart is dead or dying is the most important step, particularly if you want them gone for good and not spreading at a later date. A wart turning black is often cited as a major sign or proof that a plantar wart is dead or dying. However, there are some things to look out for to be sure. First, tiny black specks on plantar warts are common, these are blood vessels and a sign that the wart is healthy and normal, not a sign of death. Additionally, a black spot in the center of a wart is often only a sign that the wart is bleeding beneath the skin. It is only when a wart is entirely black that it is very likely to be dead and beginning to separate from the skin.
Plantar warts have many layers of skin cells. The top level may die, leading to the appearance of death while the entire wart is not fully dead. Make sure to look for signs of total death or see a doctor for confirmation.
Dying warts can come in many colors depending on how they were treated. Details on home remedies for plantar warts can be located in this article. Another way to diagnose a dead plantar wart is if it has shrunk, dried up and is crumbling away. Pieces of the dead wart begin to fall off on their own or with only the gentlest of rubbing. You will need to be sure that the pieces of wart crumbling away are not simply dead skin, and is truly parts of your wart. This is generally a very clear sign that the wart in question is dead or dying rather quickly. If you really want to be sure a wart is dead, look for multiple signs instead of just one.
Obviously if a wart falls out entirely, leaving a hole or indentation in your foot it is completely dead. Bear in mind that this assurance exclusively applies to plantar warts that have fallen out or could be pulled off on their own. If the wart in question was cut out, there are no guarantees due to the fact it was still alive at that point and even a tiny remainder of tissue will just cause it to regrow.
Other signs of a dead plantar wart include:
- The wart is fully shrunken and skin looks normal.
- There is no longer a raised callus.
- The pain has ceased completely even with applied pressure.
- The black specks within a wart have disappeared and it dries up.
Plantar warts can plague people for years and frequently both return and spread. Knowing when a wart is completely destroyed is the very best defense against developing a continuous problem. Most risks that come with dead plantar warts are merely related to infection but proper precaution can eliminate the chances of this occurring.
Dead wart identification can be very hard, but not impossible. You should attempt to look for as many signs as possible as opposed to just settling for a single one. Armed with the right information, you can stop worrying about your wart returning with a confirmed death.