Looking after your Feet
Your feet are probably the most important part of your body - in a way. They get you to where you want to go when you don't have transport. But if you don't look after them, then there are several conditions that can adversely affect them.
Corns and calluses.
There's a difference.
You may think you have foot corns, but instead, you may be suffering from foot calluses. How do you tell the difference? Well, they may be similar in some ways, but they have different characteristics that make them quite different from each other.
Let's take a look at corns and see just how they develop. Foot corns are thickened areas of skin and these occur when too much pressure is applied to the foot. Uncomfortable shoes can apply pressure to the top of the foot, so the tops of your toes are likely to get foot corns. Also they can occur under the ball of the foot and in between the toes. Apart from causing quite a bit of pain, they look terrible.
Compare Corns and Calluses.
When you compare a corn to a foot callus, they are quite different. The corns on your feet are round shaped calluses of dead skin. Foot calluses are also the same with areas of the skin that have become thick and hard and toughened up to protect you from further damage. A type of self-defence.
But calluses tend to be flatter and spread over a larger area. They are also a bit thicker. In fact, they may cover the whole ball of the foot area. To make matters worse, you can have a callus on your foot and a corn on top of it! That's ouch! Painful.
How did the Corns get there?
Callused skin on your feet occur because there is continual friction, pressure and irritations, usually from incorrectly fitted footwear. Another reason might be due to actual poor mechanics of your feet. The most common place for corns to develop is on the upper side of the foot. Calluses, on the other hand, tend towards the sole of the foot, particularly where the first metatarsal bone meets up with the big toe.
Calluses are also popular on the heel. Calluses don't hurt as much as foot corns, and they are not dreadfully detrimental to your health. But if you ignore them they can get infected from ulceration.
Your Personal Foot Corn.
Corns appear as a thickening of the skin on the toes. If you examine the shape of a corn, it appears cone-shaped with the larger part pointing down into the skin. You can have a corn over a callus, or surrounded by calluses. If you were to simplify the description you might say a corn is a concentrated callus, all heaped into one spot.
One of the common causes of corns and calluses is a condition called hammertoes. You get hammertoes from keeping your toes tightly bunched up for a long period of time. Pushing your delicate feet into tight shoes would be the main reason you will suffer from hammertoes. When your feet are in a space that is not large enough for them to spread out comfortably, the toes are kept bent for the total time you are wearing those shoes. Over time, the muscles in the toes shorten and that makes them look like a hammer.
Obviously, that's how the condition gets its name. As a result of the toes being in a pushed up position, bent upwards, they are prone to developing corns.
Corns and calluses on the feet are normal, and they are the only way the feet can set up a defence and protect themselves. If you start a prevention program, they may even disappear by themselves. But if that doesn't look like it's going to happen soon, then you can look at some treatment options. The treatments include using medicated corn pads, salicyclic acid, shavers and pumice stones. The thing to remember most of all is look after your feet and work on prevention, not treatment.
Treatment for Corns.
Treatment for Corns.
You can avoid going through these treatments if you observe some simple steps to prevent corns from developing.
It’s best not to cut or shave corns without some professional help. You might cause an infection.
Trim your toenails. Long toenails simply means more pressure inside the shoe.
Practise good foot hygiene. Keep your feet clean and dry as possible.
Always buy shoes that fit properly. Don’t buy them for the way they will make you look if they are pinching your toes or rubbing your heels. Real leather also helps your feet to breathe.