You’re discovering unsightly growths on your legs that you suspect are warts. You could cope with just one, but they are multiplying. Why did you get warts on your legs? Why are new ones popping up almost every day? How can you get rid of them? Your warts on legs aren’t painful, but the ugly things are hurting your social life. All you want is for them to go away. Keep reading to learn the causes of your leg warts and how to treat them.
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What Are Warts?
Warts on your legs are the visible symptom of a viral infection. The culprit is the human papillomavirus (HPV). Nearly everyone has at least one type of HPV at least once in their life. About a dozen HPV types are responsible for warts, and each of those types causes a different kind of wart.
HPV is transmitted by:
- Touching one of your warts.
- Touching someone else’s wart.
- Sharing grooming items.
- Sharing clothing or bedding.
The virus can remain dormant in your system for weeks, months, or years. Infected people don’t always develop warts, making it even harder to know when you were infected or who infected you.
Will Warts Grow on My Legs?
Warts on legs could be more than one kind, but most are flat warts. Flat warts often show up first on your face, but all you have to do is touch one, and you’ll potentially end up with a new wart the next place you touch.
Shaving often results in tiny nicks in your skin. Flat warts will spread over the face and neck of men. Women are more prone to develop warts on their legs. The warts will grow wherever the virus can find an opening in your skin.
Although flat warts are the most prevalent kind of leg warts, other types can potentially appear on your legs.
- Genital warts: If your warts are on your inner thighs, they are quite likely genital warts rather than flat warts. Genital warts are transmitted when you engage in sexual intercourse with a person who has genital warts. You can learn more about the causes of warts on thigh and how to treat them in this article.
To learn more about genital warts, see this page.
- Common warts: You can have common warts on your legs, especially if you have warts on your hands or fingers. If you have picked at or scratched a wart on your hands, you will have infectious cells under your fingernails. All you have to do is scratch your leg to transfer those cells to a new home. Read more here.
- Filiform warts: Filiform warts grow outward in tiny finger-like projections. It’s rare, but not impossible, to have them on your legs. They could be spread to your legs from elsewhere on your body if you have touched one and then touched your legs. Click here for more information about filiform wart removal.
Flat warts are usually tiny and often flesh-colored. You may not even notice them until they multiply and you have a cluster of warts. They will quickly spread on your legs because you probably have nicks and scratches. Even if the breaks in your skin are so small that you can’t see them, they are big enough to provide an entry for the virus.
Your knees can be particularly vulnerable, especially if your activities include kneeling. You can learn more here about how warts on knee develop and what to do to prevent and treat them.
The Back of My Leg
Warts can easily grow on the backs of your legs, especially if you have warts in other places on your legs. Although you may not have as many abrasions on the backs of your legs as you potentially do on your knees or the front of your legs, there’s always a break in your skin. All you have to do is cross your bare legs, and anything on the front of one leg is transferred to the back of the other leg.
Warts can also infect the back of your leg if your grooming items have touched a wart. Your calves can also be sweaty, which provides the moist environment in which the virus thrives.
Warts have plagued humans since the beginning of time. People have tried literally everything to eradicate their warts. Ancient Romans paid someone to chew off their warts. Some Brits applied pig fat to remove warts. That was probably a lot more pleasant than the combination of pig feces and ashes that others swore was effective. Some healers used spider webs to make warts disappear. It wasn’t until recent times that scientists discovered the cause of warts and developed more effective ways to treat them.
Ways to Treat
It’s a good idea to have a health care professional look at warts on legs before you try to treat them yourself. If your growths aren’t warts, you can make them worse with wart removal treatments.
Consult a doctor if you notice your warts:
- Bleeding, unless they were irritated by your daily activities or clothing.
- Becoming jagged-looking.
- Becoming painful.
- Changing color.
- Changing shape.
- Discharging pus or other fluid.
Warts with these symptoms can be signaling abnormal growth that requires professional attention.
You can self-treat your warts with several home remedies or over the counter products. You have lots of choices.
Inexpensive Home Remedies
Popular home remedies that are effective for many individuals include:
- Securing a piece of duct tape tightly over the wart. The tape suffocates the wart and it dies. Read more here.
- Covering the wart with nail polish to suffocate it. For more information click here.
- Applying crushed garlic on the wart. Keep the garlic in place with tape. It works to “burn” off the surface of the wart.
- Soaking a cotton ball in apple cider vinegar and taping it to the wart. Vinegar is acidic and will erode the wart layer by layer. Further details can be found here.
Home remedies usually take a long time to work, but they have the advantage of low cost and privacy. To find out more details on home remedies, go here.
Try Over The Counter Products
Your pharmacy has an extensive selection of wart removal products, including:
Many of these contain salicylic acid, which is an effective wart remover for most people.
For more info about are over the counter products check out this article.
Visit a Doctor
If home remedies and over the counter products aren’t effective for you, consult a skin specialist. He or she will work with you to choose the best way to remove your warts on legs. Prescription-strength creams are effective for many individuals. If necessary, the specialist can remove leg warts with a variety of surgical procedures.
Medical science doesn’t have a cure for HPV. It can only be suppressed by your immune system. The best treatment for leg warts is to keep your immune system strong enough to keep the virus from infecting you. Good lifestyle habits are the key to strengthening your immune system.