woman outside tying here crossfit shoes

Are foot corns causing you pain, keeping you from wearing your favorite shoes, or even preventing you from doing the things you love? Foot corns are a relatively common condition that can cause discomfort and irritation; and they affect approximately 5% of Americans.

At the Celebration Foot & Ankle Institute, we’re dedicated to keeping your feet healthy and happy. We will help you understand what foot corns are, how they appear on your feet, and most importantly, how to treat them effectively.

What is a Foot Corn?

A foot corn, a heloma, is a common skin condition that develops because of friction or pressure on specific foot areas. These pressure areas can cause the skin to thicken and harden, resulting in a cone-shaped, raised bump that’s usually yellow or grayish. Foot corns often occur on the tops, sides, or between the toes, where constant friction from ill-fitting shoes or excessive pressure can irritate.

What Does a Corn Look Like on Your Foot?

Corns can present themselves in a few different ways, depending on their location and the pressure they’re subjected to. Here are the common types:

medical professional treating corn on foot with cue tip

  • Hard Corns: These are dense and compact patches of thickened skin that usually develop on the tops or sides of your feet. They appear as a small, round, and raised area with a central core that presses into the deeper layers of skin.
  • Soft Corns: Found primarily between the toes, soft corns are softer in texture due to the moisture in the area. They often appear as white, rubbery lesions and can be more prone to infection.
  • Seed Corns: These tiny, discrete corns tend to appear on the bottom of the feet and can be painful despite their size.

What Does a Corn Look Like on Your Foot?

Yes, foot corns can be painful, especially when subjected to pressure from shoes or rubbing against other toes. It is possible for individuals to feel an intense or painful burning sensation in and around the corn. Corns can also become more painful if left untreated, as the friction irritates the area.

Treatment for Foot Corn

woman soaking and exfoliating her feet to treat and prevent foot cornsWhile foot corns can be bothersome, the good news is that they are treatable! Here’s how you can manage and alleviate the discomfort caused by corns:

  • Wearing Proper Footwear: Foot corn often results from shoes that do not fit properly. Opt for shoes with a broader toe box, ample cushioning, and not squeezing your toes together.
  • Padding or Inserts: Over-the-counter padding or cushions can help reduce friction and pressure on corns. These can provide relief and prevent the grain from worsening.
  • Soaking and Exfoliation: Soaking your feet in warm, soapy water can soften the corn and gently make it easier to exfoliate with a pumice stone. Remember to be gentle to avoid causing further irritation.
  • Topical Treatments: Certain creams or ointments containing salicylic acid can help break down the thickened skin over time. However, following the instructions and using these products is important.
  • Medical Intervention: If your corn is particularly painful or doesn’t respond to home treatments, it’s best to seek professional help. Our podiatrists can provide expert advice and even recommend a minor corn removal procedure.

Foot corns are a common foot condition caused by pressure and friction. While they can be painful, effective treatment options are available to help you find relief and prevent their recurrence. If you are struggling with a foot corn, make an appointment today with one of our podiatrists.

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