Where Have All The Warts Gone?

I remember being worried when planning my wedding that some warts that suddenly appeared on my left hand would be embarrassing during the ring exchange.  Happily, they mysteriously disappeared in the nick of time.

The reason warts appear, then usually disappear without treatment, is that they’re caused by a virus.  The virus can remain inactive in the body for months before the warts appear.  Warts disappear by themselves because the body’s immune system fights the wart virus and builds up an immunity to it.  This is why as people age they have less warts.

There’s a lot of interesting folklore associated with warts.  Much of it’s stimulated by the fact that hypnosis seems effective against warts and warts almost always vanish by themselves within two years.  But the credit is usually given to the folk belief invoked in removing them.

One of the more colourful folklore aspects of warts is the belief that touching a frog or toad may give you warts.  However, kissing a frog might turn it into a prince.  Actually, there may be some scientific grounds for the legends about frogs.  High amounts of a chemical called bufotenin are found in the skin of many frogs and toads and bufotenin produces hallucinations and may even have aphrodisiac effects.

So next time you kiss a frog, you won’t get a prince, but you won’t get warts either.