Callused heelCorns and calluses are just two of the many skin issues on the feet. They are simply dead skin that builds up over time. However, if not properly taken care of, they may end up causing you discomfort, embarrassment, or even pain. Fortunately, these conditions can usually be treated at home without any outside help.

What is a Callus?

When friction occurs between your skin and something else, it can result in different skin conditions. One of these is a callus, which forms as a protective barrier for the more sensitive inner layers of your skin. You will usually find that calluses form on your heels and under the metatarsal heads, as these are the areas where pressure is put most often. Although typically painless, sometimes the area can throb a little.  

People who develop this buildup of dead skin are usually those who work on their feet all day or who go barefoot. Athletes may also find that they are prone to these. There are also structural forces at play, for instance people with flat feet, bunions, or hammertoes may be more susceptible.

What is a Corn?

Corns are another form of dead skin building up as protection. In this case, they are found between and around your toes and resemble waxy pieces of corn. They form when your toes are too crowded and rub up against each other in your shoes. These little bumps are more likely to cause you pain because they have a core that can rest on a nerve. Corns can either be soft or hard. When they are soft, they are usually found between your toes. The moisture found there keeps them more pliable. The hard kind can be found anywhere on your toes, including the tops.

Simple Treatments and Easy Prevention Methods

Both of these skin issues can be treated at home, granted you are healthy and without diabetes. First, you will want to soften your skin in some warm water for a few minutes. Then, gently remove skin by using an emery board or a pumice stone around the affected area. Always move in one direction and stop if you feel any pain. A few sessions should completely get rid of the extra layers of skin. Never try to cut off the skin with anything sharp. If this method doesn’t work, then you should see a podiatrist about the professional removal of your corn or callus.

To prevent repeat occurrences, make sure you are wearing the right shoes. Avoid anything that is too tight or that crowds your toes. If you know of areas on your feet that are more prone to developing these bothersome skin conditions, you can use cushioned pads (non-medicated) to protect those areas. You can even put tape over the area so that friction won’t be allowed to occur.

Visit Mark Gasparini, D.P.M., for More Help!

People with more stubborn corns and calluses or people with diabetes should seek professional help. Call Mark Gasparini, D.P.M., at (516) 804-9038 to schedule an appointment in our Massapequa, NY, office.