For years many people have thought that developing painful corns or calluses where just a part of the ageing process. We accept that deformity of the foot; bunions, hammertoes are the new normal for our feet and leave it at that.
For some of us, a painful corn is unavoidable due to an underlying medical condition although for the majority, corns can not only be treated by your podiatrist, they can be prevented!
Well first we need to understand how and why we develop corns and callus.
Friction and pressure are the two key factors leading to a corn developing. When we have a regular amount of force rubbing against our skin our bodies own defence mechanism swings into action and tries to strengthen the area by increasing the production of skin. This skin is comprised of layers of keratin on top of each other. Unfortunately, hard, layered keratin itself then increases the bulk of the area and leads to MORE rubbing on the offending object be it a shoe, pedal, or toe. This leads to an exponential growth and very quickly, pain. If the callus/corn is not removed it can even lead to tissue breakdown underneath the hard keratin layers, known as an ulcer or foot wound. These can be quite dangerous and debilitating, particularly with compromised health conditions such as diabetes or smoking.
If you are unlucky enough to already have a painful corn or callus, removing the offending lesion is simple, quick and easy. As you can see Pride Podiatrist Ben Westaway demonstrating here:
At Pride Podiatry we aim to help you not only treat your current painful corn or callus, but work with you to eliminate or re-distribute the pressure away from the offending area. This is very different for each person however it may involve changes in footwear or orthoses, exercises to improve the amount and quality of motion, or a strength program to change movement patterns.
If painful corns or callus are getting you down, slowing your movement, reducing your physical activity then give us a call and book your assessment today.
A handy hint for those who develop painful corns or callus across the forefoot, or the ball of the foot is to implement a calf stretching regime. When our calf muscles are tight it causes us to rise up onto our toes earlier in the gait cycle and can increase the peak pressure across our forefoot. By completing a simple calf stretching regime daily you can decrease the duration of peak pressure underneath the forefoot and slow the rate of corn and callus formation.
For a simple calf exercise program click here: Calf Stretching 101