What Causes Warts?

Warts of all kinds are annoying and some can even signal danger. It would be nice to prevent them. To have any chance of doing that, you need an idea of what causes warts.

All warts are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). This virus gets into the skin at a certain point and infects it. The cells in that area grow very rapidly. A wart is formed at that site.

Warm, moist environments are breeding grounds for many varieties of warts. Anyplace that is wet can be a threat. A shower or locker room floor can be a problem in this area, especially if warm water covers the floor. People can pick up HPV in swimming pools, hot tubs, and saunas.

Skin abnormalities give the virus a place to take hold. If you have an irritation or a rough spot on your skin, it can give rise to a wart. If you are a swimmer, you may have plantar warts because of the combination of the moist environment and rough or broken skin from the surfaces of the pool. Plantar warts get worse because pressure from walking on them pushes them into the skin.

You can also contract HPV at the site of a patch of broken skin. This can be a rash or a cut. It can be a hangnail or a fingernail that you have bitten off very closely. It can even happen with a scrape or a scratch.

You can get common warts following excessive handling, such as in a job, of meat or poultry. The same goes for fish. Working with these foods keeps the skin moist over a long period of time.

HPV also causes genital warts. They are considered a sexually transmitted disease. They can be spread through contact with the throat or the mouth occasionally. Usually, they are contracted through exposure to the genitals or the anus.

Once the HPV is in your system, the warts can be carried to any other place on the body. You do this by scratching or touching them. Then, when you touch another body part, the HPV is spread. If the strain you have is genital warts, the infected areas will be on the genital areas.

You may have genital warts for awhile and they may go away. If this happens, be careful. You can still spread genital warts even if you are showing no signs of the infection. Genital warts are highly contagious, so you should take precautions such as using condoms during sex.

The question may arise as to whether a mother can spread genital warts to a baby when it is being delivered. The answer is that she can, but only rarely. The only time this would be a concern is if the doctor suspects that the warts will bleed excessively. At that point, a cesarean section will probably be performed.
There are many ways that warts can be spread. Some of them have to do with the warm, moist environment that fosters their growth. Some have to do with sexual activity. However HPV is actually the only cause of warts.


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