Corns and calluses are areas of thickened skin on your feet or toes. At Artisan Foot and Ankle Specialists, with offices in Mission Viejo and Laguna Hills, California, a team of highly rated foot and ankle experts treats corns, calluses, and potential complications like nonhealing foot ulcers. If you have a stubborn corn or callus, call the office nearest to you or schedule a consultation online today.
Corns and calluses are two types of toughened skin. Both corns and calluses frequently appear on the feet, either on the ball of the foot or on the tops of the toes. While corns and calluses are similar in some ways, they have different underlying issues.
You can usually tell the difference between corns and calluses with a careful visual inspection of the affected skin.
Corns are typically small and round. They commonly appear on the tops of your toes but can also grow between the toes or on the bottom of the feet.
Corns are usually very hard, particularly if they're above a joint. When corns occur on the sides of or between your toes, however, they're more likely to be soft and rubbery. Less commonly, you can also develop corns on the bottom of your foot.
Corns can be very uncomfortable.
Calluses are usually larger than corns, and they don't necessarily have a defined shape. Calluses typically appear on the bottom of the foot, in the weight-bearing areas (the ball or heel of your foot).
Unlike corns, calluses are usually painless. However, over time a callus could potentially grow larger and harder until it causes discomfort.
Severe corns and calluses can both lead to complications like infection or difficulty walking if untreated. If you have diabetes, you're particularly vulnerable to corn and callus complications like foot ulcers.
Corns and calluses both occur because of pressure and friction. As your body tries to protect your skin from pressure and friction, it generates new skin layers that form the corns and calluses. The main reasons for this include poorly-fitted shoes and wearing shoes without socks.
If you have a foot deformity like bunions or hammertoes, you're more likely to develop corns and calluses on the top of the affected joint due to continual pressure from your shoe or friction with other toes.
Artisan Foot and Ankle Specialists strongly recommends professional care for corns and calluses. Trying to cut the old skin off yourself is risky with a danger of infection.
The podiatry team can safely and painlessly trim away the excess skin in the office. Alternatively, they may apply patches containing an acid that gradually peels away the tough skin. After treatment, custom orthotics can help to prevent a recurrence.
If you have a bunion or hammertoe, the only way to prevent the corn or callus recurrence is to treat the root of the foot deformity and may involve minimally invasive surgery.
For help with corns and calluses, call Artisan Foot and Ankle Specialists or book an appointment online today.