If you do decide to treat genital warts, talk to your
doctor about the best treatment for you. There are prescription medicines you
or your doctor can put on the warts. Or your doctor can remove them with
lasers, surgery, or by freezing them off.
Even if you treat
visible warts or your warts go away without treatment, the HPV infection can
stay in your body's cells. It is possible to spread genital warts to your
partner even if you have no signs of them.
Can HPV and genital warts be prevented?
The best way to
keep from getting genital warts-or any other STD-is to not have sex. If you do
have sex, practice safe sex.
Use condoms. Condoms may help reduce the risk
of spreading genital warts, but they do not protect the entire genital area
against skin-to-skin contact.
Before you have sex with someone,
talk to them about STDs. Find out whether he or she is at risk for them.
Remember that a person can be infected without knowing it.
have symptoms of an STD, don't have sex.
Do not have sex with
anyone who has symptoms or who may have been exposed to an STD.
not have more than one sex partner at a time. Having several sex partners
increases your risk for disease.
If you are age 26 or younger, you can get the HPV shot. The vaccines Cervarix(What is a PDF document?) and Gardasil(What is a PDF document?) protect against two types of HPV that cause cervical cancer. Gardasil also protects against two types of HPV that cause genital warts.