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Callus on the feet

Calluses are called tylomas or keratomas which are the protective layers of compacted dead skin cells or patches of skin that becomes thick, especially in the bony areas in order to protect the skin from injuries or damage. When the callus starts to develop, they cause no pain, but with constant pressure and friction on one part of the foot, usually the heel or the ball of the foot found under the metatarsal heads, discomfort can occur. Callus can also develop on the hands and fingers. A good example is a musician playing a guitar for so many years who develops calluses on his/her fingers.

The second metatarsal bones found in the feet bear most the weight of the body and callus can develop under the second metatarsal. On the other hand, this can also occur in other metatarsals or there are several calluses that form at a time.

Symptoms of callus on the feet

  • A thickening of the skin especially over a bony area that does not have any borders and it is usually oval in shape.
  • A discoloration of the thickened skin such as red, brown or yellow-gray
  • Burning and throbbing sensations

Wearing of improper footwear such as shoes that are too small, tight fitting or have narrow-toed shoes such as high heels.

Severe symptoms of callus on the feet

  • Pus or fluid that drains from the callus
  • Pain and fever
  • Tenderness in the area around the callus
  • The affected area is usually swollen

Causes of callus on the feet

  • Wearing of improper footwear such as shoes that are too small, tight fitting or have narrow-toed shoes such as high heels.
  • Engaging in vigorous athletic activities
  • Walking barefoot can cause thickening of the skin
  • Those who have flat feet where the arch is too low and unstable foot are prone to end up with calluses.
  • Abnormal gait
  • Wearing an ill-fitting sock where it bunches up at the toes and cause friction
  • A high-arched feet
  • Worn-out pad placed on the soles of the feet
  • Obesity
  • Presence of bony bumps
  • Having long metatarsal bones that are close to the ground which will cause more pressure and friction than the normal sized metatarsal bones.

Treatment and home remedies for callus on the feet

  • Soak the affected feet using warm water that is mixed with salt for 15-20 minutes. Rub the feet against each other since this helps in promoting proper circulation of blood.
  • After soaking, scrub off the dead skin cells using a nail file. Just remember to avoid rubbing it too hard in order to avoid injury to the area.
  • Take care of the foot regularly in order to help prevent and minimize the thickness of the callus on the feet.
  • It is also recommended to walk barefoot on the beach since the sand and gravel helps in removing the callus on the feet as well as scrubbing off the dead skin cells.
  • Place talcum powder on the feet before wearing shoes since it helps minimize friction between the skin and the shoes.

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