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Verruca Socks: Do They Work And Is There A Better Way?

Verruca Socks - Should You Use Them? Northwich Foot Clinic, Podiatrists In Cheshire

Verruca socks are special waterproof socks which aim to stop the spread of verrucas. Commonly used by children during swimming lessons, they are often purchased by parents to stop a verruca spreading to other children, or to stop a child getting a verruca in the first place.

What Are Verrucas?

Verrucas are caused by a viral infection of the growing layers of the skin. They occur when there is contact with skin or surfaces contaminated with the human papillomavirus (HPV). The HPV strains that cause verrucas thrive in warm, moist environments, and they enter the skin through cracks in the skin, cuts or wet, fragile skin. This is why so many are picked up at swimming pools.

Do Verruca Socks Work?

Verruca socks are designed to cover the verruca so that it doesn’t spread. However, the British Swimming Association advises against them. There are several reasons for this:

  • The brightly coloured socks draw attention and can lead to teasing, putting children off swimming.
  • The socks are as effective as a waterproof plaster.
  • The HPV strains are prevalent and most children will be exposed at some point (often without symptoms). Immunity to the virus occurs in time, which is why verrucas are less common in adults.
  • Verrucas are usually painless and go away in time.

Most experts agree that the use of verruca socks should be discouraged.

What Can I Do Instead?

There are things you can do to slow the spread of the virus:

  • If you have a verruca, cover it with a waterproof plaster when you go barefoot in areas such as swimming pools and communal showers. 
  • If you want to avoid getting a verruca, you can wear flip flops in swimming pools and communal showers.
  • Avoid sharing towels, shoes or socks.

It’s important to remember that it is very difficult to completely avoid contact with the virus. 

Getting Rid Of Verrucas

If you do get a verruca, it is possible to get rid of it. Avoid scratching at or filing the verruca because this can lead to infection. There are creams and gels available to buy, but these have low effectiveness rates. 

At Northwich Foot Clinic, we offer three highly effective treatments:

  • Swift Microwave Therapy.This is the most effective method currently available to get rid of verrucas, and uses microwave energy to destroy the verruca. 3 sessions are recommended, and no dressings are needed. 
  • Verruca Needling. This is beneficial because it doesn’t require repeated visits. One treatment under local anaesthetic is usually enough, with a follow up review after 6-8 weeks.
  • Laser Therapy Treatment. This is a completely pain free treatment ideal for treating verrucas in children.

You can book your treatment through our simple online booking system, or phone the clinic on 01606 45077 if you are not sure which treatment is best for you.  Our team of experienced podiatrists are registered with the College of Podiatry and highly skilled at the removal of verrucas.

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