Genital warts are caused by a sexually transmitted disease called the human papilloma virus (HPV). Millions of people are infected with this virus but don’t know it because they are not displaying any symptoms. However, for the small percentage of men and women that will eventually develop genital warts, they can expect the unsightly growths to popup anywhere from 6 weeks to 6 months after infection.
In the beginning stages of development, the genital warts may be mistaken for pimples, except you won’t be able to pop them. Small, hard, pink or white bumps that resemble cauliflower will appear around the genitals. The bumps may sprout in batches or singly and itch. Generally, the bumps are not painful. As the virus progresses, the bumps may stay the same size or get larger. Each breakout is different. Some warts remain a microscopic size while others get as large as a dime.
Diagnosing Genital Warts
If you start exhibiting signs of genital warts, it is a good idea to get checked out by a doctor as soon as possible. Sometimes other sexually transmitted diseases are mistaken for genital warts. Plus, treating genital warts in the early stages will make them go away faster.
An experienced medical professional can generally diagnose the condition by visually inspecting the growths. He or she may conduct additional tests, though, to confirm the diagnosis. These tests may include a pap smear (for women), a biopsy, or bathing the warts in a vinegar water solution and checking the color.
Best Ways to Get Rid of Genital Warts
The best way to get rid of the warts is to use an over-the-counter medication made from natural ingredients to dissolve the warts. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, pharmaceutical drugs often cause adverse side effects to occur. For example, podofilox is a popular topical medication used to treat genital warts. The side effects associated with this cream include insomnia, nausea, painful intercourse, skin irritation, bleeding, dryness, and scarring. You want to get rid of your genital warts not incur more medical problems. You can avoid the side effects of medication by opting for surgical solutions, but the risk of irreversible scarring is high.
Another reason why you want to get an over-the-counter medication is because you want to have it on hand to treat recurring outbreaks. Even after you get rid of them, there is always a chance the warts will return as long as the HPV is active in your system. You’ll be able to treat the warts as soon as you notice them forming, which will make them disappear faster and save you some discomfort and embarrassment.
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