Warts are infectious skin diseases. They are caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV), which is actually a group of over 100 different viruses. HPV infections are very common. In the United States, almost 25 million people have one of these viruses. There are many types of warts—common. flat, plantar and genital—all of which vary in appearance and location. Flat warts are usually small and smooth and appear on the face. Warts on the eyes are mostly flat warts. While they are harmless, they may be embarrassing. There is no cure for HPV, but there are home remedies, over-the-counter products and medical treatments that can remove eye warts.
At-home treatments are a safe way to remove warts. In most situations, warts clear up on their own. But if warts are taking a long time to heal, a few home remedies are credited with removing warts. In both commercial and home remedies, a mild acid is usually used to treat the warts. Lemon balm oil can remove warts because it has citric acid. Birch has a mild acid called betulinic that is helpful in removing warts. Apple cider vinegar is readily available as a natural cure. It has ascetic acid that exfoliates the wart. Tea tree oil and dandelion oil may also remove eye warts. A useful herb for removing warts is garlic. Apply the juice of a garlic clove to the wart. In each of these remedies, apply the herb or liquid topically to the wart a few times a day and be careful not to get the substance in your eyes.
Many commercial wart removers are also available. Most of these have a mild acid as its active ingredient—in most cases, salicylic acid. Wart removers come in several forms: liquid, cream, gel or pads. There are also cryosurgery kits that people can use at home. With these products, you freeze off the wart using liquid nitrogen. Compound W is probably the best-known wart remover on the market. Salicylic acid, the main ingredient in this product, acts like a mild exfoliant, sloughing off the top layer of the wart. Whatever topical product you decide to buy, be sure to read and follow instructions carefully. Make certain the product can be used safely around the eyes.
Some eye warts may not respond to home remedies or over-the-counter products. If the wart is troublesome, medical intervention may be necessary. Chemical peels are one way doctors remove warts. For peels, trichloroascetic acid is used is used. Another procedure is called electrocautery. Doctors use an electrical current to burn off the warts. Laser surgery is also used to remove eye warts. For all of these methods, you should see a dermatologist or plastic surgeon. Consulting with a doctor will ensure that you get the best medical treatment for your eye wart.