Verrucas and warts - Preventing warts and verrucas
NHS Choices Medical Reference
Most people will be infected by the human papilloma virus at some point in their life and develop warts.
However, there are steps you can take to lower your chances of getting warts and prevent spreading them to others if you have them.
The following advice may help prevent a wart or a verruca developing.
- Do not touch other people's warts.
- Do not share towels, flannels or other personal items with someone who has a wart.
- Do not share shoes or socks with someone who has a verruca.
- Avoid scratching or picking your wart or verruca because it will encourage the HPV to spread to other parts of your body.
- Take care when shaving because the virus can be spread easily if you cut yourself.
- Keep your feet dry and change your socks every day to help prevent warts developing on your feet.
If you have a wart or verruca, you should cover it up when taking part in communal activities. For example, you should:
- wear pool slippers or flip-flops in communal areas, such as changing rooms and showers
- cover your wart or verruca with a waterproof plaster or a verruca sock when you go swimming, or while doing physical education at school
- wear gloves when using shared gym equipment if you have a wart on your hand