Corns and calluses
Corns and calluses are thick, hardened layers of skin that develop when your skin tries to protect itself against friction, injury and pressure. They most often develop on the feet and toes or hands and fingers. There can be unsightly. Neither is dangerous, but they can cause irritation.
If you’re healthy, you need treatment for corns and calluses only if they cause discomfort. If you have diabetes or another condition that causes poor blood flow to your feet, you’re at greater risk of complications from corns and calluses.
They affect women more then men.
Signs and symptoms –
Corn and calluses can make a person feel as if they are walking on stones.
Thefollowing signs or symptoms may indicate that there is a corn or callus –
• Pain or tenderness under the skin
• A raised, hardened bump
• A thick and rough area of skin
• Skin that is flaky and dry or flaky and waxy
Corus and calluses are caused largely by the same things, including –
• Abnormal walking tendencies/abnormal foot architecture or structure
• Not wearing socks with shoes, boots, sandals etc.
• Shoes that don’t fit well
• Constant stress/rubbing on a certain area of the foot
• Calluses on your hands may result from the repeated pressure of playing instruments, using hard tools or even writing.
Difference in corns and calluses –
▪︎Corns are smaller than calluses and have a hard center surrounded by inflamed skin. Corns tend to develop on parts of your feet that don’t bear weight, such as tops and sides of your toes and even between your toes. They can also be found in weight bearing areas. Corns can be painful when pressed.
▪︎Calluses are rarely painful. They usually develop on the soles of your feet, especially under the heels or balls, on your palms, or on your knees. Calluses vary in size and shape and are often larger than corns.
Risk Factors –
The factors which way increases the risk of corns and calluses includes-
It is an abnormal, bony bump that forms on the joint at the base of your big toe.
• Hammer toe
It is a deformity in which your toe curls like a claw.
• Other foot deformities
Certain conditions, such as a bone spur, can cause constant rubbing inside your shoe.
• Not protecting your hands
Using hand tools without wearing gloves exposes your skin to excessive friction.
Your doctor will examine your feet and rule out other causes of thickened skin, such as warts and cysts.
Doctor may recommend an X-ray if a physical abnormality is causing the corn or callus.
Treatment for corns and calluses usually involves avoiding the repetitive actions that caused them to develop.It can be resolved by wearing properly fitting shoes, using protective pads and taking other self-care measures.
If a corn or callus persists or become painful despite your self-care efforts, medical treatments can provide relief –
•Trimming away excess skin
Your doctor can pare down thickened skin or trim a large corn with a scalpel, usually during an office visit. Don’t try this by yourself as it could lead to an infection.
Doctor may also apply a patch containing 40% salicylic acid. Such patches are available without a prescription. Doctor will let you know how often you need to replace this patch. He may recommend that you use a pumice stone or nail file to smooth away dead skin before applying a new patch.
• Shoe inserts
If you have an underlying foot deformity, your doctor may prescribe custom made padded shoe inserts to prevent recurring corns or calluses.
In rare cases, your doctor may recommend surgery to correct the alignment of a bone causing friction.
Ayurvedic Perspective –
In Ayurveda texts Corns and calluses are explained under the term Kadara. The don has aggravated in it are Kapha and Vata.
Effective procedures –
• Pada abhyanga
Ayurvedic Treatment –
• Application of a paste made by combining one teaspoon of Aloe vera gel with one-half teaspoon of turmeric. It should be covered with the paste and bandaged overnight. It should be soaked in warm water for 10 minutes every morning, and given a daily massage with mustard oil and an application of Kasisadi taila.
• Fill a container with warm, soapy water and then add a cup of Apple Cider Vinegar before soaking your feet in water for 15 minutes. Then pour some castor oil in the same container and soak your feet.After about 10 days treatment, the corn peels will come out.
• Garlic is used as a home remedy for foot corn.Cut a clove of garlic in two. Rub half the garlic on the corn for a minute and place the other half on the corn. Cover it with a bandage to keep it. The next morning, wash the area. Do this process every night untill you corn disappears.
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