What are calluses?
Well, what are calluses? A callus is a thickened and hardened piece of the skin or soft tissue, particularly appearing in areas subjected to friction. Normally, a callus appears on the soles of the feet.
Causes of callus
Calluses are usually caused by the chaffing and shearing of wearing inappropriate shoes or by feet that already exhibit structural problems. When we stand or walk, our entire body weight is carried initially on the heel and next on the ball of the foot wherein the skin is thicker and is able to withstand the pressure. When there is increase in pressure, a few areas of the skin tend to thicken in the form of callus. And, this happens most probably as a protective response. Most of the calluses seem to be the symptoms of underlying problems such as adopting a specific style of walking, wearing inappropriate footwear or a bony deformity. A few people have an inherent tendency to develop callus due to their skin type. Callus formation is also prominent among the elderly people as they have less fatty tissue in the skin and this often leads to callus formation on the ball of their foot.
How to treat callus?
To treat a small amount of hard skin on the foot, you can gently rub the skin with a pumice stone or rather a chiropody sponge whenever you wash your feet. It is a good idea to use a moisturizing cream or lotion every day. If this does not work, it is important to seek expert advice from a certified podiatrist or chiropodist. There are times when the callus is too painful and the affected individual feels like he/she is walking on stones. In that case, a registered chiropodist should be consulted immediately. A well qualified podiatrist or chiropodist will be able to provide significant relief from callus by removing the hard skin, relieving pain and redistributing the pressure with strapping, soft padding or using other corrective devices that fit easily into the shoes. Emollient creams and lotions can also be used to delay the build up of callus and assist in improving the natural elasticity of the skin. Your podiatrist can suggest you the most apt skin preparation that will best cater to your medical needs. Podiatry/Chiropody department at the Estuary Clinic has a team of well qualified and experienced podiatrists that can offer a superior quality podiatry service to successfully treat calluses of any kind.