Continuous irritation, pressure, and friction on the toes cause the skin to harden and lead to the growth of corns. Corns are hard but painful areas on the feet that comprise of dead skin. They develop in response to pressure and irritation. They occur to protect the skin underneath the toes from further irritation and injury.
Corns can develop due to various behaviors which inherently cause pressure, friction, or irritation to the skin on the toes. Some of these habits include:
- Improper walking motion
- Wearing very tight shoes
- Wearing high-heeled shoes for prolonged periods
- Skipping socks (men)
Individuals with foot deformities are also at risk of getting corns, especially if they wear tight shoes, have improper walking motions, or cause friction to the toes by failing to wear socks.
You know you have corns if you notice hard, raised skin on your toes and feel tenderness or pain under the skin. Dry or flaky skin can also be a symptom of corns in some individuals.
When detected early, corns can be managed to prevent a foot infection. Luckily, you don’t have to visit a doctor as there are many simple yet effective DIY treatments that you can use at home to get rid of corns.
Soak in Water
One of the simplest remedies is soaking your feet in warm water for at least ten minutes every day. The warm water softens the skin and causes the hardness to subside.
To enhance this treatment, add a few drops of apple cider vinegar to the water before soaking your feet. ACV further softens the skin and wards off infections. Apply castor oil after rinsing your feet. Castor oil is a natural moisturizer for hard, dry, and rough skin.
File Using a Pumice Stone
Another solution is to file the corn using a pumice stone. Filing gets rid of the hardened skin and dead cells. You can soak your feet in warm water for ten minutes to soften the corn and make the filing process easy.
Alternatively, dip the pumice stone in warm water then file your corn. Take care not to take off too much skin as this can cause bleeding and expose you to an infection. After filing, apply castor oil to moisturize the skin.
Continued pressure and irritation cause the skin to harden further. You can protect your skin from irritation and friction by investing in padding. Visit your local drugstore and look for adhesive pads, especially those that are donut-shaped.
Apply these over the corn before wearing your shoes. Once the skin is protected, further hardening won’t occur. Moisturize the toes twice daily to speed up the healing process.
After treating your corns, the next step is to ensure that they do not recur. Ensure that you wear well-fitting shoes. Avoid tight ones as they will cause pressure on the feet. Men should also wear socks to protect the toes from friction. Ladies should limit the amount of time they spend in heels to protect the feet from unnecessary pressure.
Corns are a common foot condition among many people, and luckily, it is not as severe as infections like toenail fungus or plantar fasciitis. You can manage it at home using the remedies mentioned above.
However, contact a doctor if there is no improvement after a week of treatment. What’s more, if you accidentally hurt your toe while filing, seek medical advice to prevent a foot infection from occurring.