Genital warts are an increasingly common health issue and yet there is a certain amount of taboo that’s surrounds them. Genital warts are caused by HPV, the human papilloma virus. A hesitancy to discuss issues on the genitals, fear of being judged by others, and lack of clear information on the condition can prove disastrous in the long run and make you resort to expensive and painful treatments. Here are some common myths surrounding genital warts and the facts that you need to know.
#1 HPV affects only women.
The Facts.HPV is as likely to affect men as it is to affect women. Any sexually active person can contract HPV, even if they have always had only one sexual partner. In men, a HPV infection can result in genital warts and sometimes lead to anal cancer. Genital warts are more likely to manifest physical symptoms in women which has often led to the belief that men do not get infected with HPV.
#2 All strains of HPV can cause cancer.
The Facts. Not all strains of HPV result in cancer. Only high risk strains cause cervical, anal, vulvar, and penile cancers. Low risk strains of HPV cause skin lesions in the form of anal and genital warts. However, once a person has been detected with the virus, it is recommended to undergo annual examinations, such as a Pap smear test, to rule out any kind of cancer.
#3 Condoms offer protection from contracting HPV.
The Facts.The one is not true. Condoms protect from STDs that are transmitted by bodily fluids such as gonorrhoea, chlamydia and HIV infection. They do not offer protection against infection that spreads from skin to skin contact such as HPV, genital herpes, syphilis, and pubic lice (crabs).
#4 Absence of genital warts indicates no infection.
The Facts.Only a small percentage of those infected with HPV develop genital warts. In many cases the warts develop inside the anus or urethra and go undetected for a very long period of time. Moreover, HPV takes varying periods of time to develop symptoms. In some cases, the warts appear within a few weeks and in some, after a year. Sometimes, a person with HPV may never develop warts and the infection goes away on its own.
#5 Removal of genital warts solves the HPV issue.
The Facts.Even after removal of warts, the surrounding skin might still contain a strain of the HPV infection. While the body often fights off the infection within a span of one to two years, annual check-ups are still recommended.
#6 Warts don’t grow back.
The Facts.Unfortunately, warts can grow back at any time. The only solution to this one is to get tested regularly and keep getting the infected area checked by your doctor.
#7 Getting an HPV vaccine means I don’t need a Pap test.
The Facts.All women need to get regular Pap tests, regardless of whether they have been vaccinated for HPV or not. A Pap test examines cells from the cervix and helps in early detection of cervical cancer caused by HPV. Moreover, research has shown that the HPV vaccine is able to safeguard the body against only a certain number of HPV strains. There are some strains that the vaccine is ineffective against.
Exploring homeopathic medicine for warts
Homeopathy believes in targeting the root cause of genital warts. Merely getting the warts removed does not guarantee that the infection has gone away. Homeopathy offers unique solutions to each patient depending on individual patient’s medicalhistory, current lifestyle, and the progress of infection. Thus, homeopathic medicine for warts takes is an end to end approach that involves targeting the symptoms, removing the underlying causes, and ensuring the infection does not re-occur. Genital warts are a sensitive issue and if you feel you or your partner might be a victim of the infection, do not hesitate to explore homeopathy as a safe and side effect-free method of healing.
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