Warts refer to growths that develop on the skin following a viral infection on the epidermis. The most common virus is the Human Papillomavirus (abbreviated HPV). Once infected, the virus causes the skin to regenerate very quickly, leading to the growth. There are higher chances of getting the infection when the skin is damaged or punctured.
It is important to note that wart viruses are highly contagious, and it is easy for one to develop warts after coming into contact with wart on another person’s skin. Warts often bear the color of the skin, and will usually be rough to touch. In some cases, the warts may have a darker color and remain smooth and flat.
Warts can develop on any part of the body, but they are most common on the hands. It is easy to identify warts because they usually have a network of blood vessels that nourish the skin. This is easily seen as dark dots on the skin. Warts are typically painless, but if they develop on body parts which experience direct pressure, then they can cause excruciating pain.
Warts will usually heal on their own over a period of time. The good news, however, is that there are a number of home remedies which you can easily use to manage and treat the warts. Remember to seek medical attention from a dermatologist if you are concerned about the progress made, or notice the symptoms worsen. In case you have any doubts about any particular remedy, consult your doctor.
NOTE: For each of the remedies listed below, the progress made is largely dependent on consistency of remedy application, the size of the warts and overall skin care routines used.
1. Fresh Garlic:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: 2 Cloves of fresh garlic, gauze, lemon juice and warm water. Garlic capsules (optional).
Warts, as mentioned above, are the result of a viral skin infection that causes rapid multiplication of skin cells. Garlic ranks as one of the most effective home remedies, thanks to its potent anti-viral healing properties. This not only fights against the viral infection, it also causes the warts to shrink and fall off, effectively getting rid of the skin growths. Simply get the garlic cloves and prepare as indicated in the simple steps below.
NOTE: If you cannot stand the pungent smell of garlic, you may use the remedy and opt to rinse using lemon juice. The juice absorbs the smell and makes the use of this remedy more bearable. If it is virtually impossible to use fresh garlic cloves, you can always use garlic capsules. Make sure to consult with your doctor prior to the use of this remedy especially if you have high blood pressure or kidney disorders.
- Chop the garlic cloves and crush until you have a coarse paste.
- Apply the garlic paste on the part of the skin that has the warts and massage for a few minutes.
- Cover the skin with a bandage or gauze to hold the paste in place and allow for best results.
- Leave the paste on for 20 minutes and then rinse the paste off multiple times. Remember to use lemon juice to rinse the skin and eliminate the smell of garlic.
- Use this remedy twice daily for as long as the warts have not healed. Note that bigger warts take longer to heal, and may require frequent application for a more effective solution.
2. Hot Water Soak:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: Hot water in a basin and pumice stone. You may also add white vinegar or Epsom salt to the water.
If you are looking for a simple remedy to get rid of small warts without any particularly hard-to-get ingredients, this is the perfect solution for you. The reason behind using hot water is to help soften the warts and allow for them to fall off the skin with relative ease. In addition to this, the hot water also goes a long way in preventing skin infections from arising while fighting the virus responsible for the wart formation. You may add vinegar or Epsom salts for their immense health benefits on the skin. A pumice stone comes in handy as you may use it to scrub the skin and slough off the growths.
- Before soaking the warts in hot water, it is best to scrub the warts using pumice stone. Do this as gently as you can to prevent skin injury.
- Add the optional ingredients to the water and stir to mix, otherwise skip this step and proceed with the directions indicated below.
- Soak the affected skin in hot water. Ensure that the water is not too hot so as to burn the skin as this would cause further damage to the growths not to mention the pain that accompanies scalding.
- After about 30 minutes, or when the water cools down, pat the skin dry.
3. Tea Tree Oil:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: Tea tree oil, warm water/ aloe vera gel/olive oil and cotton wool.
You may use tea tree oil to treat warts at home, thanks to the oil’s potent anti-viral properties. The oil not only destroys the virus, it also helps speed up the healing process. One of the benefits of using the oil is that it is easily abpsorned by the skin, making its healing properties readily available on the skin. Note however, that tea tree oil is pretty strong when used in its undiluted form, which is why you need to dilute it appropriately. Use warm water, aloe vera gel or olive oil depending on your personal preferences.
- First dilute the tea tree oil using any of the aforementioned ingredients.
- Stir to mix well and then soak the cotton wool in the mixture.
- Apply the oil by placing the wet wool on the warts and massaging gently.
- Use this remedy thrice daily, and particularly before bedtime for best results.
4. Lemon Juice:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: Freshly squeezed lemon juice or fresh lemon rind, cotton wool and warm water. In the absence of lemons, Vitamin C tablets work just as well.
Lemon juice is rich in Vitamin C, which is why it is recommended for the natural treatment of warts. The acid present wears the wart out so that it falls off with ease. Other benefits of using lemon juice include skin cleansing and the elimination of the virus. You may use freshly squeezed lemon juice or fresh lemon rind as described in the steps below. Vitamin C tablets also work well in place of the lemon. Prepare the remedy as follows for best results.
Using Lemon Fruit/Rind
- Soak the cotton wool in the lemon juice for a few minutes and apply on the skin.
- Massage the warts to allow absorption of the remedy’s healing properties.
- You may also apply the rind on the specific parts of the skin with the warts.
- After 30 minutes or so, rinse off the remedy using warm water.
Using Vitamin C Tablets
- Crush the tablets in a bowl until you have a coarse powder.
- Add a few drops of water in order to create a paste for easy application.
- Apply the paste on the warts and then cover using a bandage. This may cause a burning sensation at the onset, but it dissipates quickly enough before speeding up the healing process.
- Rinse the paste off using warm water.
- Repeat this procedure thrice daily until the warts are completely healed.
5. Apple Cider Vinegar:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: Equal amounts of Apple cider vinegar (ACV) and warm water as well as cotton wool.
It goes without saying that apple cider vinegar is an all-star when it comes to potent home remedies used for an array of skin conditions. It is no surprise, therefore, that this remedy is effective in the natural treatment of warts. ACV not only creates a hostile environment for the virus, it also gets rid of the warts by destroying the growth. This is attributed to the vinegar’s high acidic content. To avoid skin irritation, it is best to dilute the vinegar using an equal amount of water as indicated in the procedure below. To get the best results, use the remedy overnight whenever you can.
- Dilute the Apple cider vinegar using an equal amount of water and stir to mix well.
- Place the cotton wool in the dilute mixture and soak for a few minutes before applying on the affected skin. This may cause some swelling at the onset, and while this is perfectly normal, it should ease after a day or two. If you are concerned about the side effects of apple cider vinegar on your skin, or you have sensitive skin, it is best to discontinue the use of this remedy.
- Rinse the skin after 30 minutes and use this remedy daily until the warts finally fall off. Note that in some instances, the warts come off but leave the core behind depending on the size of the warts.
6. Sap Obtained From Milkweed:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: A few drops of the milkweed sap and pumice stone.
Milkweed is a popular plant that grows in the wild (and has since been grown in some homes). The plant has long been regarded as a poisonous plant, thanks to its distinct milky sap. It is important, however, to note that the sap only poses a risk if taken internally. The toxic compound is due to the presence of a cardiac glycoside that causes damage to the heart when taken internally. For this reason, the difficulty of this remedy is ranked as moderate and is not advisable for use in kids.
When used to treat warts, the topical application of the milkweed sap digests the growth. This dissolves the skin cells and eventually gets rid of the warts. It is advisable to file the wart using a pumice stone prior to using the remedy for better absorption. Just make sure that the sap does not get into the eyes as it causes blindness. Follow the directions below to use this remedy effectively.
NOTE: Steer clear of this remedy if you have sensitive skin.
- Wet the affected skin and then file using a pumice stone. This is important because it exposes the skin beneath and improves the sap absorption.
- Snap a few leaves of the milkweed plant in order to release the sap.
- Apply the sap directly on the wart and squeeze a generous amount of it.
- Leave the sap on for a few minutes and then rinse well.
- Watch out for how your skin responds; if you experience any irritation or discomfort, discontinue the use of this remedy immediately.
Time Required: 40 Min
What You Need: 1/4 Cup of fresh basil leaves, pestle and mortar, warm water as well as gauze.
Basil is your go-to home remedy for the natural treatment of warts. This is because like tea tree oil, basil is laden with anti-viral properties that help get rid of the infection. Regular use of this remedy speeds up the healing process. All you need is a handful of fresh basil leaves and a bandage to hold the basil paste you prepare in place. Below are the steps to get your basil on.
- Wash the basil and crush using a pestle and mortar until the leaves release the juice and you have a paste-like substance.
- Scoop the paste and apply a generous amount on the warts.
- Wrap the affected skin using a bandage or clean cloth and let the remedy dry for sometime.
- Rinse well using warm water.
- Repeat this remedy daily until the wart falls off, usually for a couple of weeks.
8. Raw Organic Honey:
Time Required: 15 Min prep, 24 Hrs app
What You Need: Raw organic honey (preferably Manuka honey). pumice stone, gauze and warm water.
Raw organic honey is one of the best home remedies available at your disposal as far as the natural treatment of warts is concerned. This is because honey is packed with antiviral properties that eliminate the virus responsible for the warts formation. The reason why Manuka honey is preferred is because it is extremely potent (in terms of antiviral properties) and stable.
This particular type of honey is sourced from New Zealand and has been recommended globally thanks to its healing properties. One of the most notable modes of action of this specific honey is its ability to starve the wart cells by cutting off oxygen supply. Over a period of time, the warts wither and fall off.
NOTE: Ensure you shop for Manuka honey from a reputable source prior to making your purchase.
- File the wart prior to applying the honey in order to get rid of the top skin layer and allow maximum absorption of the honey by the skin cells.
- Apply a thick layer of the honey on the warts and proceed to wrap with a bandage.
- Let the remedy remain on for 24 hours, but ensure you change the bandage frequently.
- Use this remedy daily until the warts are gone.
9. Pineapple Juice:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: Fresh pineapple juice, a basin and clean towel.
Pineapple juice has long been used for the treatment of a number of skin conditions, among them warts. This is because the juice is not only very acidic, it also has proteolytic enzymes that digest proteins found in the warts. Granted, the pineapple juice stings when first applied, but for its efficiency, makes for an excellent home remedy. Unlike other gentler remedies, avoid filing the wart prior to using this remedy as it causes excess sensitivity to the remedy.
- Soak the affected skin in pineapple juice for 5-10 minutes at a go.
- Pat the skin dry using the towel.
- Use this remedy at least twice daily. If you experience any sensitivity discontinue its use with immediate effect.
Other home remedies that you may use to treat warts include raw potatoes believed to offer relief and eliminate the excess skin growths, banana peels as well as castor oil. Other handy tips include washing your hands immediately after applying the remedies on the warts and using a pumice stone only for the harder sections on the warts. Eating helathy also goes a long way as it boosts the immune system and strengthens it to fight against the viral infection. The most important thing to remember when using any of these remedies is to be patient as the results are not instant.