Corns and calluses are thick, hard sections of skin found on the foot. These conditions aren’t serious, but they can result in severe pain. Corns and calluses are really an area of increased thickness of the skin formed by too much pressure or friction. They generally form at bony prominences of the foot where friction is greatest. Usually poor fitting shoes cause these areas of friction, but they can also form because of how the foot moves during walking.
Calluses are typically found on the bottom of the foot. Corns are actually calluses that occur on the toes when hammertoes have formed. (Hammertoes are toes that are always bent, forming an upside down V when looked at from the side.) These thick layers of dead skin cells are generally white or yellow patches of thick, tough skin. They may also look flaky, or seem like dry skin. Corns are generally small and round, with a very sore spot in the middle and yellowish skin surrounding. Calluses are commonly larger and may have a peak in the middle.
Anyone can develop a callus or corn from poor fitting shoes or the way their foot moves during walking. The podiatrists at Coastal Podiatry Associates can easily treat these painful areas. The fastest and easiest way to treat calluses and corns is to remove the areas of increased skin. Another method is to reduce the friction or irritation that caused the callus or corn. This can be accomplished by adding padding to the shoe to offload the pressure area or adding an orthotic. Orthotics are custom shoe inserts that help the foot move in its most natural path. Another important preventative step is to wear comfortable shoes to help protect the foot from corns and calluses.