Corns and calluses are two of the most common forms of foot pain diagnosed by podiatrists in Australia, and can have a severe impact on a person’s quality of life. A round shaped callus of dead skin that can occur almost anywhere on the foot, corns typically form when there is too much pressure or friction on the skin.
They can also be caused by deformities in the feet with toes rubbing against each other, shoes that are too small, too big or too shallow, and also our biomechanics, the way our joints and muscles work together when we walk.
At Pride Podiatry, we can provide immediate relief from painful corns and callus with expert care. Where possible, we will also work with you to determine the cause of the corn and prevent it’s recurrence via a tailored management plan.
We’re often taught that corns are unavoidable and are a natural product of aging, but the reality is that is not the case! At Pride Podiatry we can not only help by removing corns and repairing your feet, but we can also prevent corns from reforming.
The terminology surrounding corns and calluses can be somewhat misleading. Corns are often referred to as ‘growing’, but in reality, they form from layers of dead skin.
Corns and calluses form for a variety of reasons. But the most common are abnormalities or deformities on the toes, shoes that don’t fit correctly, biomechanics (the way our foot makes contact with the ground), and also when we overcompensate for other pains in our feet, legs, and back, altering the way we walk.
Corns form when your body goes into defensive mode to protect a sore point of skin where it's making contact. The body’s response is to grow hard skin around the area known as Keratin.
Unfortunately, as the body produces more of the hard skin to protect itself, it increases pressure on the point of contact making it more painful.
The corns that form on exposed parts of the foot are known as hard corns, but when corns develop between the toes they often stay wet and not quite as rigid, although no less painful.
Soft corns typically form between the toes and are most often caused by poorly fitting footwear. Over time, shoes that are too tight across the toes compresses them against each other, and in extreme cases push them one atop the other. Soft corns can be debilitatingly painful and are also prone to ulceration and infection. If you also suffer from poor circulation or diabetes, this can lead to serious complications.
At Pride Podiatry we are firm advocates of prevention being the best treatment. However, we understand that these conditions are gradual onset conditions and often form over time. The first you are aware of it is when it becomes an issue.
It’s with that in mind that we highly recommend regular checkups with your podiatrist, which can result in early detection and prevention of corns and calluses. Early intervention is the least painful option and with a tailored management plan, you can prevent corns and calluses forming.
Preventative measures can also include a change to shoes with a wider toe box and a low heel, combined with the use of toe socks that provide a barrier between the toes.
We recommend steering clear of home remedies such as corn plasters and or corn paint. While they may provide temporary relief, they are prone to causing infection and do not address the underlying issues that cause corns and calluses.
At Pride Podiatry, we aim to help you both treat your current painful corn or callus, and work with you to eliminate or redistribute the pressure away from the offending area to prevent a repeat.
Treatment is very different for each person. However, it may involve changes in footwear or custom orthotics, exercises to improve the amount and quality of motion, or strength and conditioning programs to change movement patterns.
If painful corns or callus are getting you down, slowing your movement, or reducing your physical activity then give us a call and book your assessment today.