Genital warts or venereal warts, the small grey or flesh-coloured bumps found on the skin around the genital areas, are symptoms of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. HPV is transmitted from one person to another during genital, oral or anal sex with an infected partner. It is also spread through direct skin-to-skin contact during sex.
Genital warts are most often found in clusters, giving it a cauliflower-like appearance. They are usually found on the external surfaces of the body like the head of the penis, penile shaft, scrotum, vaginal lips and around the anus. The warts can spread to inner parts like urethral opening, inside the vagina, on the cervix or inside the anus.
What are the Causes of Genital Warts?
Genital warts are caused by infection with human papillomavirus, transmitted through various modes like:
- Penetrative sex
- Skin-to-skin contact during sexual activity
- From an infected mother to child during birth
- Sharing of swimsuits, underwear or bath towels with the infected person
- From hands of an infected mother to baby during activities such as diaper changing
Home Remedies for Genital Warts
Use of liquid nitrogen for warts removal has been the standard treatment procedure for genital warts. The procedure, called cryotherapy, involves the application of extremely cold substance like liquid nitrogen or a mixture of dimethyl ether and propane on the wart. However, they have other side-effects and can be very painful.
Many people suffering from genital warts look for solutions of how to get rid of HPV warts fast and some of the following home remedies for genital warts can be an end to their search.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: Use of apple cider vinegar for genital warts removal has been found to be effective. Clean the area of skin with warts and apply apple cider vinegar on the warts with a cotton swab. Leave it for about 10-15 minutes and wipe with a dry cloth. Doing this thrice a day for at least a week will turn the surface of the wart into a dry scaly tissue that can be peeled off easily. Holding a cotton swab dipped in apple cider vinegar against the wart with a tape for about 2-3 hours can help in severe cases of warts. However, it is important to wash away the vinegar as it can burn the healthy portion of the skin if retained for long.
- Tea Tree Oil: Tea tree oil is an excellent antiseptic, anti-fungal and anti-viral agent. Mix 4-5 drops of tea tree oil with 1 tablespoon of almond oil or olive oil. Dab the mixture several times a day on the warts.
Alternately, mix a few drops of tea tree oil in half a bucket of water and soak in this water for about 30 minutes. This will also help reducing the itching around the warts.
- Castor Oil: Apply a little castor oil directly on the warts and the surrounding skin before going to bed. Leave it for the night and wash in the morning. In about 2 to 3 weeks, the warts turn black and fall off.
- Garlic Cloves: Garlic is an excellent anti-viral agent. Use crushed garlic paste directly on the genital warts and cover with bandage. After one hour, wash it off with water. This can be done 2 times a day, till you get rid of the warts. Another method involves using garlic with castor oil. Apply castor oil and place a clove of garlic on the wart. Hold the garlic with a tape and leave it overnight. Wash off with water in the morning.
- Banana Peel: The enzymes in the banana peel can help safely dissolve warts. Place a piece of the inside of the banana peel against the wart (you should be seeing the yellow part of the banana peel). Hold it in place with a tape or bandage and leave it overnight. Wash it off in the morning.
- Witch Hazel: This is an astringent that cuts off the blood supply to the warts. This makes the warts shrink and fall off. Apply the distilled liquid solution of witch hazel on the warts directly. Leave it for about 10 minutes and wipe off with a dry cloth.
- Thuja Occidentalis: Using thuja for treating genital warts is commonly suggested by homeopathic doctor. Place 2-4 drops of thuja extract on the wart and cover with a garlic or banana peel and hold with tape.
- Onion Juice: Onion is anti-microbial and in combination with salt, it can help in the healing of the genital warts. Soak onion (sliced sprinkled with salt) overnight, make a paste and extract the juice of this paste by passing through a sieve. Apply this juice to the genital warts everyday for about 3-4 weeks, till the warts peel off.
- Extract of Olive Leaf: Olive leaf has found to interfere with the viral growth by directly penetrating the viral cells and has been used for treatment from the times of ancient Egypt.Steep 1 tablespoon of dried olive leaves in one cup of hot water. Strain and consume the tea 2-4 times a day. Pregnant women with warts have to consult their doctor before consuming olive leaf tea.
- Pineapple juice: Pineapple contains an enzyme called bromelain that helps in healing inflammation on the skin. It also contains manganese that reduces scars of the healed wart areas. Squeeze out juice from fresh pineapple and apply on the warts with a cotton swab. Let the cotton swabs be there for about 10 minutes. Wipe off the juice with a dry cloth. This routine can be done 2-3 times a day.
- Willow Tree Bark: The bark of the Willow tree is a natural source of salicylic acid that has anti-inflammatory properties. It is used for treatment of acne, inflammation and joint and muscular pains. Scrape the willow tree bark into pieces and moisten them by sprinkling a little water on them. Place the moistened bits directly on the wart and hold it in place with a tape. Leave it for overnight or for a whole day. Change the bark everyday.
- Fig Leaf: The sap of a fresh fig leaf contains the enzyme Ficain, which does not cause any burning or irritation on the skin and helps in healing of the warts.
Break a fresh fig leaf to take out the milky sap. Dab the sap with a cotton swab directly on the warts 2-3 times a day. There is no need to wipe or wash off the sap.
- Milkweed: The sap of the milkweed can also work in the same way as the sap of the fig leaf. Break the weed and extract the oozing sap. Dab the sap directly on the warts and let it stay. Do this once or twice a day.