Plantar warts have several names (or spellings) such as planter warts, planters warts and verrucas but whatever the name, these flat-surfaced warts can be very tender, painful and stubborn. They appear on the sole, or plantar surface, of your foot so this is where the name plantar derives.

These foot areas, like the ball, heel and bottom of the big toe, support the entire weight of the body and carry it many thousands of steps each day and that means thousands of miles during our lifetime. So it is not surprising that when a plantar wart takes a firm hold on the sole of your foot, it causes considerable pain and discomfort.

All warts are caused by viruses called human papilloma viruses (HPVs) and they are all infectious. These viruses can lurk on surfaces, clothing, towels and the skin. The skin can be yours or it can be somebody else's. Direct contact with any HPVs on any of these areas can infect your skin through a scratch or wound. The virus then grows inwards. There is thickening and damage to your skin and then warts can appear. Fortunately, these warts are non-cancerous growths which form "round areas" within the skin similar to the warts that can occur on hands. They can be difficult to spot at first when they are small and often painless, but this is the easiest time to treat them and a natural healing product made from essential oils is very popular for such treatment.

Plantar warts usually appear as areas of rough skin with a dry crusty surface with tiny black dots deep inside and as they grow, they can become very painful as pressure is applied to them especially when standing or walking. Some people believe that these tiny black dots are roots or seeds but they are actually dried-up capillary blood vessels.

Children tend to get plantar warts much more often than adults. They are more at risk (a) because as one gets older the immune system becomes better prepared for the viruses and (b) they tend to run around much more with bare feet and it is so easy for a child to pick up the virus in a shower, at the gym or around the pool.

If you or your child have noticed a lesion on the ball or heel of the foot or at the bottom of the big toe, then try squeezing this lesion between your fingers as if pinching. If this action is painful, then you can be pretty sure that the lesion is a plantar wart. Usually the only warts in children that do cause pain are plantar warts. It does not take long for a plantar wart to become flattened and painful from the pressure of walking - rather like walking on a small stone.

It is not known why some people get plantar warts so easily while others never get them at all. They are very common and may bleed if injured. Wart viruses are difficult to avoid because they are everywhere but to minimize contact, wear footwear at public pools and when using locker rooms and public showers.

Amoils offers all natural treatments for common conditions and ailments using essential oils. Visit our Plantar Warts page for more information.