What Can I Do About Flat Warts?
You had a small, skin-colored wart on your face. Makeup covered it so you weren’t too bothered by it. But now more are growing and it’s getting hard to hide them. It’s time to do something that will eliminate every wart. But how do you get rid of flat warts? Your facial skin is sensitive and you don’t want to replace the warts with scars. If you do get rid of the ugly little growths, how can you keep them from returning? Keep reading. This article has tips that will help you eliminate your warts.
Table of Contents
- How Can Flat Warts Be Removed?
- I Need Treatments for Flat Warts
- How Do I Treat Flat Warts on My Face?
- What Are the Home Remedies for Flat Warts?
How Can Flat Warts Be Removed?
Flat warts like to invade your face, hands, arms, and legs. The virus that causes them enters through breaks in your skin. Infection can even gain entry through scratches and cuts so small you can’t see them. All warts are highly contagious and flat warts are no exception. If you have one flat wart, you’ll likely soon have a cluster of them.
Your immune system is always working to destroy infection, including viruses. If your warts don’t bother you, they will eventually go away without treatment. The problem with waiting is that it can take months before your skin is clear of warts.
Over The Counter Treatments
You can remove flat warts with a variety of over the counter remedies. Some work by causing the top layer of the wart to dissolve. Others can penetrate the wart and destroy it from the inside.
Products you can try include:
- H-Warts – a homeopathic formulation containing essential oils.
- Terrasil – homeopathic pads, ointments, and creams with minerals.
- Dr. Scholls – gels, strips, and liquids, most containing salicylic acid.
- Compound W – creams, liquids, and pads containing salicylic acid.
These can require repeated applications to destroy warts.
You can find a variety of other products and store brands at your favorite drugstore. If you choose a product with salicylic acid, start with the smallest percentage you can find. Salicylic acid dissolves wart tissue layer by layer and it can be harsh.
Take time to read the label to ensure that the product is safe for facial skin if you are trying to remove flat warts on your face.
How Long Will It Take to Remove My Warts?
Any product that is gentle enough to use on sensitive skin is likely going to be slow-acting. It can take up to three months for warts to disappear for some individuals, regardless of which treatment they’re using. A big factor in healing time is the strength of your immune system. Remember that it is trying to destroy the virus that is causing your warts. A strong immune system is the best wart remover you can have.
Changes That Need Attention
If you are treating your flat warts with over the counter products or home remedies, you need to monitor the changes in your warts. If they do anything other than darken and die, you need to seek medical attention. Potentially serious changes include:
- Sudden or rapid growth of existing warts.
- Sudden or rapid growth of new warts.
- Bleeding if you haven’t irritated the wart.
- Irregularities in the size, shape, or color.
- Appearance of a sore or ulcer.
Changes such as these could be due to abnormal cell growth.
I Need Treatments for Flat Warts
If you can’t wait for the gentler products to work, or if your warts persist, you will need to consult a skin specialist. He or she may start with prescription strength salicylic acid.
If the salicylic acid doesn’t work, or is too harsh for your skin, you may find success with prescription strength creams.
Your doctor may choose one or more of the following:
- 5-fluorouracil: brand names include Carac, Tolak, and others.
- Tretinoin: brand names include Retin-A, Tretin-X, and others.
- Imiquimod: brand names include Aldara and Zyclara.
The choice will depend on the condition of your skin, how many flat warts you have, and the location of the warts. These creams generally remove your warts by causing your skin to peel.
What If Creams Don’t Work?
Warts that are resistant to any topical product may require surgical removal. The surgical procedures for flat warts are the same as those used to remove other types of warts.
- Cryotherapy, which is freezing warts with liquid nitrogen. Further details can be found here.
- Electrocautery, which is burning warts with an electrical current. For more information click here.
- Excision, which is cutting the wart out. Please see detailed descriptions here.
- Laser, which uses a laser beam to burn the wart. Read more.
These methods are generally effective in eliminating the wart, but they can also leave a scar. The treatment most recommended for facial warts is laser removal, as it has the least tendency to scar your face.
Are There Other Treatments?
Newer treatments include injecting a medication directly into a flat wart. The medication is designed to stimulate your immune system so that it destroys the virus responsible for your warts.
Not every remedy or treatment is safe if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding. You should also tell your doctor about any medical conditions you have and any medications you are taking.
How Do I Treat Flat Warts on My Face?
Flat warts on your face are probably the ones you most want to get rid of. Sensitive facial skin stops you and your doctor from using many of the treatments used on other less-sensitive locations. Procedures like freezing, burning, or excision are treatments of the very last resort because of the scarring that will result.
You can try home remedies, but those can sometimes irritate your skin. Always start with the mildest remedy you can find.
A Natural Approach
Consider consulting a naturopathic physician if there is one near where you live. Naturopaths consider all aspects of an individual’s body before prescribing a remedy.
You will be questioned about:
- All your medical conditions and medications.
- All your symptoms.
- Your overall physical and emotional health.
Once a naturopath has evaluated what’s going on in your body, he or she will prescribe a treatment designed to strengthen your immune system. You may also receive gentle treatments for your flat warts.
Recommendations may include:
- Prescription strength vitamins.
- Prescription strength minerals.
- Botanical remedies.
- Herbal remedies.
- Homeopathic remedies.
The remedies will enable your body to reject the virus that caused your warts and allow your skin to heal.
What Are the Home Remedies for Flat Warts?
Over time, individuals have experimented with many home remedies for removing various kinds of warts. These can be effective for flat warts, but you must be very cautious about using them on your face. Try them elsewhere on your body before trying them on your face.
Tea tree oil is helpful for any viral infection, including warts. It’s concentrated, so you need to dilute it with another oil before using.
Blend one of two drops of tea tree oil with a tablespoon of a carrier oil, such as:
Carefully massage the blend into the wart area. If it doesn’t irritate your skin, you can add more tea tree oil to your blend.
Garlic is another effective viricide. You can attach a piece of garlic to your warts with a bandage. This is probably a night time treatment, but you will need to check your skin for irritation if you try this.
Some individuals apply the tea tree oil, then tape a piece of garlic over it. You may prefer to crush garlic and blend it with water to make a paste. The paste is easier to apply and less obtrusive. It may also be gentler on your skin, depending on how much water you use. Click here for more information about using garlic for flat warts.
Other Remedies To Try
Other remedies that are generally safe for your face include:
These involve dabbing the remedy on your warts and covering with a bandage. Repeated applications are usually necessary.
There’s also the tried and true duct tape remedy for removing warts. A small piece of duct tape tightly adhered to a wart will eventually suffocate most warts. You may want to try it on flat warts that aren’t on your face, as the tape should remain in place for six days. Please see detailed descriptions here.
Every home remedy will take time. Some are easier to apply and leave on if your flat warts are not on your face. It usually takes longer to destroy flat warts on your face because it’s difficult to leave the remedy on continuously.
Although warts will generally go away, treating them keeps them from spreading. Flat warts on your face can start out tiny, but they have the potential to become disfiguring. You have lots of choices when it comes to getting rid of flat warts, but finding the right remedy or treatment for you takes careful experimentation.
You can find further details of Flat warts here.