How can I prevent warts?

There’s really no way to prevent warts. However, you can lower your risk of picking up the virus or stop warts from spreading by taking these steps:

  • Avoid shaving over a wart.
  • Break the habit of biting your nails or picking at cuticles.
  • Don’t share towels, washcloths, clothing, nail clippers, razors or other personal items.
  • Don’t touch another person’s wart.
  • Get the HPV vaccine and use condoms to prevent genital warts.
  • Keep your feet dry to prevent the spread of plantar warts.
  • Try not to scratch, cut or pick at a wart.
  • Wear flip-flops or shoes when using a public locker room, pool area or showers.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 04/26/2020.

References

  • American Academy of Dermatology. Warts: Overview. Accessed 5/4/2020.
  • American Academy of Family Physicians. Warts. Accessed 5/4/2020.
  • American Academy of Pediatrics. Warts. Accessed 5/4/2020.

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