Dealing with Corns and Calluses on Feet

Corns, also known as helomas or clavi, and calluses, also known as tyloma, are areas of thickened skin that develop to protect that area from irritation. They occur when there is repeated friction or pressure against the foot. If the thickened skin is located on the bottom of the foot, it’s called a callus. If it occurs on the top of the foot or toe, it’s called a corn. Corns and calluses on feet are not contagious but can lead to more serious foot problems for people with diabetes or decreased circulation.

Corns and calluses occur on parts of the feet and sometimes the fingers.

Common locations for corns are:

• Top of the toes at the knuckles or between toes

• Bottom or the sides of the foot

Common locations of calluses are:

• On the bottom of the foot (soles or bottom of heels)

• Tops and sides of the feet

What Causes Corns and Calluses?

Corns often occur where a toe rubs against the interior of a shoe or sock, particularly if you have irregularly shaped toes or hammer toes. Excessive pressure at the balls of the feet – common in women who regularly wear high heels – may cause calluses to develop on the balls of the feet.

Other common causes of corns and calluses on feet are:

• Abnormal anatomy of the feet, such as hammertoe or other toe deformities.

• Footwear that is too short or too tight or that exert friction at specific points.

• Wearing shoes and sandals without socks, especially if socks do not fit properly.

• Abnormalities in gait or movement that result in increased pressure to specific areas.

Finger calluses may develop in response to using tools, playing musical instruments or using work equipment that exerts pressure at specific areas.

What are the Symptoms of Corns and Calluses?

Corns are round bumps that often appear dry, waxy or discolored. Calluses are flat areas of hard, thickened skin with a waxy appearance. Corns and calluses are:

• Hardened, thick areas of skin

• Rounded or conical and may appear as a bump on the skin

• Dry, scaly or flaky

• Painful if they interfere with walking or other activities

What Treatments are Available for Corns and Calluses on Feet?

Corns and calluses can be treated with medicated products to chemically peel the thickened, dead skin. Many products are available for use as home remedies. Salicylic acid is an active ingredient in all these products.

Salicylic acid dissolves the protein that makes up most of the corn and the thick layer of dead skin which often tops it. These products are gentle and safe for most people.

If the corn is bothersome and doesn’t respond to salicylic acid and trimming, consider consulting a physician or podiatrist for treatment options. Podiatrists can measure and fit people with orthotic devices to redistribute their weight on their feet while they walk so that pressure from the foot doesn’t weight heavily on their corns.

People with fragile skin or poor circulation in the feet should consult their doctor as soon as corns or calluses develop. If there is an infection (such as increasing pain, the presence of pus or other drainage, swelling, and redness), seek medical care immediately.

If a corn or callus persists or becomes painful, medical treatments can provide relief:

• Trimming away excess skin. Your doctor may pare down thickened skin or trim a large corn with a scalpel during an office visit.

• Callus-removing medication. Your doctor may apply a patch containing 40% salicylic acid. Your doctor may also recommend pumice stone, nail file or emery board to smooth acid in gel form.

• Medication to reduce infection risk. Your doctor may recommend applying an antibiotic ointment to reduce the risk of infection.

• Shoe inserts. Your doctor may prescribe custom-made padded shoe inserts to prevent recurring corns or calluses.

• Surgery. Your doctor may recommend surgery to correct the alignment of a bone causing friction.

How Do I Prevent Corns and Calluses on Feet?

For proactive measures, you can prevent corns and calluses by:

• Wearing properly fitted shoes. If you have any deformities of the toe or foot, talk to your podiatrist to find out what shoes are best for you.
• Use gel pad inserts to decrease friction points and pressure. Your podiatrist can help you determine where pads might be useful.

As with any pressing medical condition, consult your doctor for the best results. Contact Jamfeet today for healthy feet that deserve to look as good as they feel.

Choosing the Right Shoe for You

When you are shopping for a pair of shoes, it is important to not just focus on fashion. Stylish shoes may be nice to look at butthe comfort and functionality of the shoes is more important for the overall health of your feet.

Many foot and toe problems can develop as a result of wearing the wrong shoes. These include: calluses, corns, bunions, plantar fasciitis, and many more issues. Most of these problems occur when you wear a shoe that is too pointy, tight, smaller than your actual size, and causes friction or pressure on your feet when you walk. It is very important to make sure your shoes are the correct size because we spend so much time wearing shoes on a daily basis. Making sure your shoes are comfortable and well-fitted will save you from dealing with foot and toe problems later on.

Tips For Trying On The Right Shoes

  • • It’s best to try on shoes at the end of the day. Feet normally swell and are at their largest form at this point of the day.
  • • It is a good idea to trace your foot on a piece of paper and take it with you to the shoe store. Any shoe that is narrower or shorter than your foot tracing should be avoided.
  • • Take any inserts you wear regularly to test them while you are choosing shoes.
  • • Having your feet measured is a good idea because as you get older, the size and width of your feet tend to change.
  • • Make sure you stand while trying on a new pair of shoes. Walk around to see if the shoe fits right. This will give you a more accurate idea on whether the shoe fits or not. Does the shoe fit loose or snug?
  • • Press down on the top of the shoe and wiggle your toes to make sure you have about a half-inch of space between your longest toe and the end of the shoe. This space will allow your foot to press forward when you walk.
  • • Don’t always pay attention to size because it may not fit right. Your foot could fit better in a smaller or larger size but you won’t know until you try it on.
  • • Keep in mind that if shoes fit properly, you should not have to “break them in”.
  • • Wear the same type of socks you intend on wearing regularly to try on shoes.
  • • Always trust your own comfort level. Sizes will vary from shoe to shoe but it is up to you if they are comfortable and the proper fit.

 

Although you may find a pair of shoes that fit perfectly, they may not always be the best option for your feet.

Tips For Choosing Shoes

  • • It’s best to try on shoes at the end of the day. Feet normally swell and are at their largest form at this point of the day.
  • • It is a good idea to trace your foot on a piece of paper and take it with you to the shoe store. Any shoe that is narrower or shorter than your foot tracing should be avoided.
  • • Take any inserts you wear regularly to test them while you are choosing shoes.
  • • Having your feet measured is a good idea because as you get older, the size and width of your feet tend to change.
  • • Make sure you stand while trying on a new pair of shoes. Walk around to see if the shoe fits right. This will give you a more accurate idea on whether the shoe fits or not. Does the shoe fit loose or snug?
  • • Press down on the top of the shoe and wiggle your toes to make sure you have about a half-inch of space between your longest toe and the end of the shoe. This space will allow your foot to press forward when you walk.
  • • Don’t always pay attention to size because it may not fit right. Your foot could fit better in a smaller or larger size but you won’t know until you try it on.
  • • Keep in mind that if shoes fit properly, you should not have to “break them in”.
  • • Wear the same type of socks you intend on wearing regularly to try on shoes.
  • • Always trust your own comfort level. Sizes will vary from shoe to shoe but it is up to you if they are comfortable and the proper fit.

 

Medical professionals agree that the best shoes to keep your feet healthy have a moderately flat but flexible sole, supportable arch, and laces for adjusting. A shoe that replicates the natural shape of the foot is best for you and your health. Many injuries and health issues can occur from wearing the wrong footwear during activities. It is important to choose the right shoe for your foot type. Choosing shoes the right way will save you money in the long run and keep your feet healthy for daily activities.

You can contact board certified podiatrist,Dr. Kamran Jamshidinia, in Los Angeles for all your orthotics needs. Schedule an appointment today and have the experts help you find the right pair of shoes for you.

Common Foot Injuries for Runners

The foot is an incredible structure made up of bones, muscles, ligaments, and tendons. It is designed not only to provide movement but also give support and stability. This is the reason why runners rely so much on the performance of their feet to cover vast distances. However, constantly running hundreds of miles daily may lead to repetitive injuries. When running, the feet endure the strain from repetitive pounding caused by running. Thus, aside from dead toenails, calluses, and bruises to name a few, they also suffer from other common foot injuries.

Plantar Fasciitis

The foot is supported by the plantar fascia tendon, which runs lengthwise, from across the bottom of the feet. Plantar fasciitis is the inflammation of the plantar fascia and it is characterized with a sharp and stabbing pain usually felt at the base of the heel. Runners who suffer from plantar fasciitis say that the pain is similar to stepping on a nail.

The most frequent reason for this common foot injury is overtraining and overusing the foot. The use of worn-out footwear can also lead to this inflammation. Once the foot is overused, the muscles on the foot weaken and the heel is no longer able to carry the load of your body.

Runners who experience this type of foot injury often wear stability or orthotic shoes to temporarily reduce the symptoms. Patients are also advised not to go barefoot and do stretching exercises of the calves.

Achilles Tendonitis

The Achilles tendonitis is the inflammation of the Achilles tendon. The Achilles tendon is a tough tissue that connects the calf muscles of the leg to the heel, allowing the foot to pivot and make other types of movements. Achilles tendonitis is characterized by painful sensations at the back of the lower leg and just above the lower leg. It is also characterized with swelling on the heel area.

There are many reasons why Achilles tendonitis occurs, but experts associate the inflammation to having tight calf muscles. Having tight calves or lower legs creates a lot of strain on the tendon, eventually causing the tendon to be inflamed. The tight calf muscles are often caused by over training or wearing unsupportive footwear that can cause too much burden on the tendon over time.

If you have Achilles tendonitis, you can improve the condition of your foot by resting and doing stretching. Putting on cold compress to the affected area as well as wearing structured footwear may also help. If you constantly suffer from Achilles tendonitis, you can prevent this injury from happening by doing calf exercises like dead lifts, leg squats, calf raises, and box jumps.

Extensor Tendonitis

The tendons that extend from the muscles of the shin to each toe digit is called the extensor tendon. It allows you to do complicated movements with your toes and eventually in moving the entire foot. And just like any other tendons on the feet, the extensor tendon can also be inflamed thus the name. Extensor tendonitis is characterized by painful sensations isolated on the affected digits.

There are many reasons why extensor tendonitis occurs. These reasons include wearing unsupportive shoes and having weak (or tight) calf muscles. The inflammation tends to go away after a few days of resting the foot, but the condition can be improved by wearing shoes with appropriate support as well as stretching the calf muscles.

Inflammation on The Adductor And Abductor Hallucis

The foot is comprised of both the adductor and abductor hallucis, which is a type of muscle that provides support and structure to the foot. While the adductor hallucis runs horizontally across the top of the foot, the abductor hallucis muscle runs lengthwise; thus, creating an arch.

In most cases, the inflammation of both muscles is associated with other foot injuries like the plantar fasciitis. You are also likely to experience this foot injury more if you are also suffering from bunions. Inflammation of these two types of muscles is often caused by not having enough arch support on the foot, thus wearing appropriate shoes is very important in preventing this injury.

Stress Fracture

The foot is one of the most abused parts of a runner’s body. The constant exposure to vibrations can cause small fractures or fissures to the bone. In fact, it is common for most runners to experience stress fracture in the metatarsal bone.

Unlike other common foot injuries that occur almost immediately, a stress fracture is a slow process and requires time for the issue to build before any symptoms are felt. Once the condition is worst, that is the time when runners feel a sharp pain on the bone. In most cases, a stress fracture is often misdiagnosed as tendonitis or other more common foot injury.

If you suspect that you are experiencing an aggravated stress fracture, you can ask your doctor to look into your bones via X-ray or MRI if the stress fracture is too tiny. Other tests may also be conducted to isolate the problem.

Dr. Jamshidinia at Century City Medical Plaza is a board-certified foot surgeon trained in all areas of foot and ankle surgery. He is Board Certified by the American Board of Podiatric Surgery and a Fellow of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons. For concerns regarding common foot injuries do not hesitate to contact us today!

 

Foot Odor Remedies

While we seem to have summer year round here in Southern California, it has begun to cool off enough that we are putting away our sandals and slipping into our cozy closed toe shoes. Unfortunately, as much as we love the warmth, comfort and safety that our tennis shoes provide, they also provide a not so welcome side effect. The side effect of course is stinky feet, the kind of stinky feet that can be extremely hard to quelch. The dark, closed environment of our closed shoes can create a perfect place for bacteria to thrive. Our feet naturally sweat when we put them into dark and warm environments. While the sweat itself may be odorless, the bacteria growth that occurs as a result of the moist sweat mixed with the dark environment leads to the stinky feet that you just can’t do away with. Luckily there are various tips and tricks for doing away with those infamous stinky, can’t take my shoes off without gagging, feet. Read on to learn about foot odor remedies.

 

What Causes Stinky Feet?

The cause of stinky feet, as stated above, is a mixture of moist sweaty feet and a dark enclosed environment. Additionally, when the sweat comes in contact with the already existent bacteria on our feet it can create the unpleasant odor that we have all come to know as smelly feet. While unless you have a date, smelly feet may not seem like that big of a deal, the truth is that the odor can actually be a sign of the fact that our feet are predisposed to getting various foot related ailments. For example, people with smelly feet may be more predisposed to getting sores, blisters, athlete’s foot, nail fungus and various other foot related ailments.

The bottom of our feet have more sweat glands than other parts of our foot. Not only do the bottom of our feet have more sweat glands but they also have more bacteria than any other part of our feet. When you sweat the bacteria on your feet eat the sweat and create an acid byproduct that reeks. That acid byproduct is produced rapidly when we sweat due to the fact that the sweat and bacteria tend to meet at the same area.

Luckily, once you understand the cause of foot odor there is a way to cure stinky feet.

 

Foot Odor Remedy

Knowing the cause of stinky feet is half the battle, now it is time to learn how to combat the odor that plagues your ten little piggies. There are various methods that can be taken to combat foot odor, such as:

Soak Your Feet in Saltwater- Salt is one of the best and most natural ways to pull moisture out of your skin. While you generally would not want to pull moisture from your skin, a nice saltwater soak for your feet can be the best way to improve your smelly feet. When salt pulls moisture from your feet it limits the life sustaining abilities the skin of your feet has for bacteria. Thus a saltwater foot bath can help to kill your foot bacteria and ultimately cure stinky feet.

Change Your Socks- Many sock brands produce their product out of fabrics such as nylon. Nylon, among a few other common materials, trap moisture. When you wear nylon socks and sweat, the socks will begin to trap the moisture of your sweat and thus create a perfect feeding ground for bacteria. Cotton allow feet to breathe and do not trap moisture which make them the perfect material when you shop for socks.

Use a Spray or Powder- There are various products on the market that kill bacteria and freshen shoes. These products, while they cannot necessarily do away with the source of stinky feet, can be very beneficial in removing the smell in the shoes. A disinfectant such as lysol is perfect for killing bacteria that feeds on your sweat which would create more acidic byproduct.

Use Baking Soda- Baking soda, much like saltwater, removes moisture. If you are not a fan of soaking your feet in saltwater, then adding some baking soda to your shoes can be very helpful in your attempt to cure stinky feet. Just add a little of the baking soda powder to your shoes everyday and dump out the old in the morning.

Dry Your Shoes- Washing your shoes everyday can be a very helpful way to refreshing your shoes. However, it isn’t very realistic to be able to wash your shoes everyday. What you can do to remove bacteria is dry them everyday in order to ensure that you kill off bacteria and create an environment where new bacteria cannot form.

 

If you suffer from foot odor and want to correct it, these methods can be very beneficial. It is important to create a dry environment where bacteria cannot form.