Are you still enjoying fresh corn from Chicago’s many produce stands and farmer’s markets? It’s a delicious treat – but there is another kind of corn that is definitely unwelcome.
Two toes rubbing against each other can form a corn, an area of thickened skin with inflamed tissue underneath. Hard corns form on the bony top part of a toe while corns found between toes have soft cores.
Another type of thick, hardened skin found on the foot is a callus which forms to protect underlying skin from friction. Calluses are often found on the ball of the foot, the heel and under the big toe.
Repeated pressure and friction on the feet cause both corns and calluses. An abnormal gait or excessive pressure from sports can cause these skin problems, as can wearing shoes that are too tight or too loose.
Home Remedies Can Relieve Corns and Calluses
You may have hardened skin areas on your feet that are not painful. If so, try these home treatments first:
Soak and rub. Bathe feet briefly in warm, soapy water and use a pumice stone or foot file to gently rub the thickened areas. Be sure to dry thoroughly and then apply an emollient lotion.
Moisturizing cream. At night, liberally apply a moisturizing cream and then put on loose socks. In the morning remove skin by rubbing with a pumice stone.
Foam pads. Use moleskin or foam pads directly on the corn or callus to reduce pressure. Over-the-counter salicylic acid products can damage healthy tissue if applied incorrectly and even lead to infection, so avoid these.
You can prevent corns and calluses by wearing well-fitting shoes with a roomy toe box to minimize friction and pressure. Keep feet dry with cotton socks.
Painful Corns and Calluses Must Be Assessed
For corns and calluses that become increasingly painful, contact Stavros O. Alexopoulos, DPM for an evaluation. We will examine your feet and take x-rays right in our office to determine if there is an underlying bone problem.
If conservative treatments haven’t worked, we can shave the top of a callus to reduce excess pressure. Oral antibiotics may be needed for an infected corn. Creams with urea are effective as an exfoliant to remove dead skin.
In some cases, your gait or foot structure may cause calluses and corns. An abnormal walking motion or hip rotation can place too much pressure on the feet. We may prescribe custom-fitted orthotics to relieve this pressure and friction.
Call Today for Relief from Corns and Calluses
Call Dr. Alexopoulos, board certified podiatrist at 773-561-8100 for an appointment in our Chicago office. You can also browse the website for more information. We can find a solution to reduce or eliminate your corns and calluses to relieve your foot pain.