|Warts and Verrucae
These horny growths on the skin are due to a virus infection
and commonly occur on the hands or feet. When they occur
on the hands they are known as warts, and on the feet they
are known as verrucae.
Verrucae are particularly 'catching' and swimming baths
and bathrooms are places where they are most easily spread
because the moist, warm atmosphere is just right for this
infection to be passed from child to child. Some swimming
baths hold foot inspections, and will not allow in any child
with a verruca. Others insist that special 'verrucae-socks'
are worn if a verruca is present. It is as well to try and cure
your child's verrucae quickly as valuable swimming lessons can be missed. No one ever died from a verruca, but many
children die each year through not being able to swim.
Treatment for warts and verrucae
There are several methods of treating these unsightly ( on
the hands ) and painful ( on the feet ) infections.
A special ointment, applied regularly, will gradually cure the wart.
Applying a piece of sticking plaster continuously for three weeks or so will again result in a cure, by
excluding air from the infected skin. For large, persistent
warts, carbon dioxide 'snow' treatment, or cutting them
out is sometimes necessary. But rather than resort to this
latter treatment, try the simpler forms and if they fail go to
see your doctor.
Warts on the hands can be treated with ointment and
sticking plaster in a similar manner to verrucae. It is
important to treat a simple wart as soon as it appears,
otherwise spread can occur. This can be embarrassing for
teenagers, who are particularly sensitive to skin problems.
There are a multitude of old wives' remedies for the cure
of warts, such as burying steak, or a potato, in the garden at
a full moon, after rubbing them over the affected part, or
putting saliva or radishes on the wart. These 'remedies' are
of themselves of little value, but the psychological boost
these acts give are often sufficient to cause the body's
natural defence mechanisms to come into full play, producing a cure.