There’s the Rub: Stopping Corns and Calluses Before They Start


Corns and calluses on your feet are equal parts unsightly and uncomfortable. They have some similarities and differences, but you’ll want to prevent both of them from appearing anywhere on your feet.

Avoiding Corns

A corn on your foot is a buildup of excess skin on the toe. If you have one, it generally means your feet are experiencing more friction than usual. To avoid corns, it’s very important that you always wear shoes that fit securely without cramping your toes. To avoid corns, remember the following when purchasing shoes or choosing a pair from your closet:

  • Limit time spent in high heels or other shoes that overly restrict your toes’ natural movement

  • Trim your toenails regularly to ensure your shoes fit as intended

  • Seek professional treatment for hammertoes or other toe deformities that could apply extra pressure on your toes while wearing shoes

Avoiding Calluses

Just like corns, calluses are caused by abnormal friction applied to the feet. The difference, however, is that calluses most commonly occur on the balls of the feet where most of the movement against the ground occurs. The good news about calluses is that there are some over-the-counter remedies you can use to relieve the friction before it causes a problem.

  • Soak your feet in warm water or wash them with an exfoliating scrub to soften calluses

  • Wear a foam insole or metatarsal sleeve over the ball of your foot to alleviate the friction caused by walking

  • Lightly scrape feet with a pumice stone to mitigate skin that may already be hardening

When to See the Professionals

Like all foot conditions, corns and calluses should be addressed by a professional as soon as possible. You may need to be fitted for orthotics if you regularly experience friction and sore spots on the surface of your feet after regular use. Or, if your corns and calluses worsen to the point that they need to be removed, you should always consult a doctor before attempting to do so yourself.

No matter what your foot needs are, our board-certified doctors are ready for you at our eight Houston-area offices, including Northwest Houston, Northeast Houston, Tomball, Liberty Dayton, The Woodlands, Atascocita, Cleveland, and Livingston. Make an appointment today to keep your feet smooth and happy.