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Calluses on Feet

Many people get affected by calluses on feet. This Buzzle article discusses the causes and treatment for foot calluses.
HolisticZine Staff
When feet are exposed to severe pressure or friction, they tend to develop calluses or corns. Moreover, they are more prominent on specific parts of the feet such as, the balls of the feet and underneath the big toe. These corns are hard and have a central core. Sometimes, corns also develop between the toes. However, these are softer due to the moisture present in those areas. Calluses are a collection of dead skin which becomes thick, and in some cases, painful with additional collection of dead skin if not treated at the right time. It is one of the most common foot problems, especially among women. In certain cases, corns and calluses on feet may be a symptom of some kind of foot disorder. They can be usually treated at home, but in situations like the ones mentioned above, they should be treated professionally.
Causes
  • Walking bare feet, without shoes or socks, results in the development of a callus on the sole of the feet.
  • Wearing shoes with a thin sole, shoes that are narrow or cause the toes to be pressed together, or shoes with high heels cause excessive friction and pressure, thereby resulting in calluses on different parts of the feet.
  • People who have flat feet have a higher probability of developing calluses. This is because the arch of the foot is flat in these cases, and applying weight on the foot tends to shift the skin forward, resulting in calluses mostly on the balls of the feet.
  • People who spend a lot of time standing, for instance, those people whose job involves the same, are at a higher risk of developing calluses.
  • Those who have other foot problems, such as hammer-foot, arthritis, and bunions develop calluses because of the prominence of the bone that causes friction resulting in calluses.
  • Many people tend to develop calluses from running and walking excessively and performing other athletic activities. This is again due to excessive pressure on the foot.
  • In older adults, calluses develop because the skin becomes weak and begins to sag. This causes the collection of skin and results in calluses.
Treatment
Calluses on feet can be treated by oneself; however, in serious cases, it is better to refer to a podiatrist rather than attempt to treat it oneself. Doing so, can result in serious infections and further worsen the condition. Following is an effective home remedy for removing calluses:
  • Take a gallon of warm water and add half a cup of baking soda, ensuring that it dissolves completely in the water. Soak the feet in the solution for about half an hour.
  • Take a pumice stone and rub it vigorously on the calluses to remove dead skin. Continue till you have removed a good amount. However, be careful not to rub it too deep as this can cause the callused area to hurt.
  • Rinse your feet after soaking and scrubbing, and dry them thoroughly.
  • Use a lotion meant for excessively dry skin and rub it in on the callused areas. A better and more effective alternative to lotion is coconut or olive oil, and even petroleum jelly.
  • To seal in the moisture, wear a pair of cotton socks, preferably overnight.
By performing this treatment once, one cannot expect the calluses to miraculously disappear. For this treatment to be effective, it must be followed on a daily basis. Only then will the results be visible. Also, do not use a blade or a knife to remove the calluses as a quick treatment. You may end up hurting yourself and aggravating the condition further.
It is wiser to prevent calluses than allow them to develop and become painful. Foot problems such as these can be prevented by following some simple methods, like wearing comfortable shoes, lining the shoes with soft insoles if the feet are prone to callus development, keeping the feet moisturized with oil, lotion, or even Shea butter and covered with socks, and maintaining a good body weight as obesity is also one of the causes of calluses. Following these methods of prevention and treatment will definitely leave you with soft, healthy, and beautiful feet.
Disclaimer: This Buzzle article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert advice.