PreventionBy Mayo Clinic staff
Avoiding cross-contamination can reduce the risk that you or your child will get or spread warts. Examples include:
- Don't bite your fingernails. Warts occur more often in skin that has been broken. Nibbling the skin around your fingernails opens the door for the virus.
- Groom with care. In order to avoid spreading the virus, don't brush, clip, comb or shave areas that have warts. If you touch a wart, wash your hands carefully afterwards.
- Keep tools separate. The virus that causes common warts can contaminate nail files or pumice stones you may be using to reduce the size of your warts. So don't use these tools on areas of your body that don't have warts.
- Don't pick at warts. Picking may spread the virus. Consider covering warts with an adhesive bandage to discourage picking.
- Keep your hands dry. Warts are more difficult to control in a moist environment.
- Habif TP. Clinical Dermatology: A Color Guide to Diagnosis and Therapy. 5th ed. Edinburgh, U.K.; New York, N.Y.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-7234-3541-9..X0001-6--TOP&isbn=978-0-7234-3541-9&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed Feb. 16, 2012.
- Goldstein BG, et al. Cutaneous warts. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Feb. 16, 2012.
- Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2012: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05611-3..C2009-0-38601-8--TOP&isbn=978-0-323-05611-3&uniqId=291436269-101. Accessed Feb. 16, 2012.