Warts. Yep. This post is about warts.
We all hate warts. We don’t even like to talk about them.
But could there be a more unifying topic? We hate them and want them to die. For our sake, we wish not a slow and painful death but a quick and easy one. Unfortunately, that is rarely the case.
Growing up, I thought warts were for children who played with frogs. Turns out that’s some sort of weird myth we all believe. Warts actually come from certain strands of HPV, human papillomavirus. I know HPV sounds scary but relax a bit. We come into contact with it all the time. And most forms are completely harmless.
The fact that most warts are harmless doesn’t diminish the irritation or embarrassment they cause. Although some warts go away on their own after a few months, some linger for years.
And that’s what happened to me. I got a common wart. Yes. Me. A grown woman. I don’t know how I got it. I don’t know where I picked up the virus. But I did. On the pad of my middle finger. Right hand.
I hated it.
It embarrassed me. It grossed me out. I mean – I eat with that hand! (Please tell me you understand. I’m feeling a little vulnerable right now.) I tried everything.
First, I waited. Dr. Google told me that most of them go away on their own. So, the minimalist that I am, I waited. A while. No dice.
***Before I go further, let me tell you that this was before my come-to-the-natural-side light bulb moment. I was all about those chemicals and didn’t think much about it.***
Next, I bought about every over-the-counter treatment I could find. I tried each of them several times. Fail. Feeling even more desperate, I went to see my primary care doctor. After multiple painful treatments of liquid nitrogen I still had a wart. And sometimes I even thought it looked a little bigger.
You might be thinking – what’s the big deal? But if you’ve dealt with warts before, you know how frustrating they can be.
This is the part that still makes me shudder. After realizing the nitrogen wasn’t working, my doctor prescribed Tagamet. Why would he give me something meant for stomach ulcer treatment? Apparently this is somewhat common. But the studies I’ve read have shown conflicting results. Mostly it didn’t help.
And me? I ended up in the emergency room because of a “rare” side effect – urine retention. Kidney issues. Imagine kidney stones (I’ve had them) but a little worse. Yeah, to get rid of a wart. Lovely.
Except, you guessed it, I still had the wart. I tell you my long, dramatic story to express how absolutely fed up I was. Honestly, it was this experience that started my journey to natural living. Because the chemicals were legitimately hurting me. And they didn’t work.
I have good news for you. The story ends well. I found a home remedy that healed like a charm. It’s simple, quick and natural. And you can try this at home.
Here’s what you need:
- Cotton balls
That’s it. No harsh chemicals. And better yet, it works.
How long will it take? Depending on the wart’s location and your motivation to get rid of it, the process can be complete within a week or two. Your pain tolerance will play a role.
Wait. It hurts? I won’t lie to you. There is a little bit of pain involved. But it is nothing – NOTHING – compared to traditional treatments.
Are you in?
Okay. Here’s what you need to do.
First, cut your cotton balls into fourths or smaller. The goal is to completely cover the wart and the skin around it. You also want to cut the cotton ball small enough so it’s not completely obvious and annoying.
Soak your sized-down cotton ball in apple cider vinegar. You’ll want it wet enough to stay damp for a while but not so wet it drips.
Place the cotton ball over the wart and secure it with a bandage. The tighter the better.
Eventually, it will start to burn. This is good. Feel the burn. Embrace the burn. Leave it on as long as you can. Rapid results rely on this.
When you need a break, remove the cotton ball and bandage. Apply coconut oil to the wart and surrounding area and cover it with a new bandage.
As soon as the burning sensation leaves and you feel comfortable, start the process over again. I ended up alternating between coconut oil and vinegar 2-3 times a day. Toward the end, when the wart is down to its root, it will be more sensitive. At that point you may want to switch more often.
If the wart is on the face or another more inconvenient area, obviously use your best judgment as to when and how often to do this.
After about ten days, there was a tiny bit of the wart still hanging on. I took some tweezers and pulled it off. I highly recommend keeping a close eye on the area for the next month or so. If you see any signs of return, immediately begin the remedy again.
It’s been almost three years since I did this myself and I’m still wart free! I have no scarring at all.
I couldn’t have guessed this would be the thing that sparked my interest in natural medicine. But I’m so glad it did. Our cabinets, right now, hold powerful, medicinal tools.
Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food. – Hippocrates (attributed)
Andrea Vandiver is a work-at-home mom and freelance writer in Oklahoma. She spends her days imitating animals and blowing bubbles. Her favorite things are those that taste, smell, feel, sound and look wonderful. The stuff that romance is made of.