How to Treat Painful Corns on Feet
Your feet are probably the hardest working part of your body, it may seem incredulous, but these hard-working extremities are, by many people, the most neglected part of the body. Of course, this begs the question, why? This may simply be down to the subconscious attitude of, “Out of sight, out of mind”. This, all too common outlook, leaves thousands of people suffering with foot problems causing discomfort, or even severe pain, and a feeling of self-consciousness when the feet are exposed.
This seems absurd knowing that most of the debilitating ailments that people suffer are easily treatable at local, private clinics. This fact is particularly pertinent given the fact that the United Kingdom is blessed with a vast network of foot health clinics and over 13,000 registered practitioners.
What are Corns?
One of the most painful complaints you can fall victim to is corns. With early diagnosis and treatment, the pain and misery they cause is largely avoidable. The early onset of corns can easily be confused with callouses, or later in their development, planter warts. All of these conditions are treated differently and as such, early, diagnosis is essential.
Corns are made up of protein and keratin, which can be either of two distinct types. Most common are hard corns, these tend to develop on the smooth skin on the top or sides of the toes. They appear as a small circular area of reddened skin with a hard center. Slightly less common, are soft corns. These are usually found between the toes due to the area having moist skin. They tend to be white in colour and soft with an almost rubberlike feel. Both are usually painful when pressure is applied to the center and neither are likely to go away without proper treatment.
Why do Corns Develop?
Corns develop from rubbing or excessive pressure on the skin of the foot. This is commonly due to ill-fitting footwear. Shoes that are either too loose, too tight or badly designed are all sure to cause problems for your feet. Women are particularly vulnerable due to the fashionable designs of their footwear, and the wish to conform and follow the elegant looking trends thrust upon them by celebrities through the media. High heeled shoes which create immense levels of pressure on areas of the feet not equipped to carry it, are the main offenders.
Badly fitting socks also increase the risk of developing corns, as does not wearing any socks at all. Joggers also raise the risk of sufferance as the activity brings about high levels of impact pressure, combine this with badly fitting footwear, and problems are sure to occur. But other innocuous activities can raise your risk of getting corns if the appropriate footwear is not used, walkers, hikers and even cyclists are considered to be in the high-risk group.
People with underlying medical conditions may also be at greater risk. Diabetics, and those with any immune deficiency disorders are vulnerable to all manner of foot complaints, including corns. Prescription medication being taken for sickness or disease can also have a great bearing on your vulnerability to developing corns.
What Can You do About Your Corns?
Being aware of your feet is the first essential thing anyone care do to help maintain healthy feet. Don’t allow the “Out of sight out of mind” attitude to become the norm. When showering or bathing, wash and dry your feet thoroughly, and inspect them for any signs of reddening or hardening of the skin. It is always worth remembering that prevention is better than cure.
If you suspect that you have, or may be developing a corn, you need a plan of action. You may decide to purchase an off the shelf remedy. At your local pharmacy you are very likely to be faced with an array of products, whose names and contents will be alien to the vast majority of people. How can you possibly now which product is best suited to your condition, are there any active compounds you should avoid due to allergies or possible reaction to other drugs you may be taking?
For the non-professional, the selection of the correct product is, at best, largely down to guess work and luck. Most people are influenced by advertising, marketing and elaborate packaging, all of which have little to do with the active efficiency of the product. At worst, you could be wasting your money, or unnecessarily opening yourself up secondary or reactionary health risks. The risks are simply not worth it, you may not have the professional knowledge to effectively deal with your complaint, but that knowledge is out there and easily accessed.
To tap into the vast pool of professional knowledge which is available to us all, simply contact your local private foot health clinic. But even here, a little wisdom is advisable when selecting your practitioner. Seek out a fully accredited professional, one who is a Member of the British Association of Foot Health Professionals (MAFHP) and a Member of the College of Foot Health Professionals (MCFHP). These organizations ensure its member practitioners exhibit the highest standards in diagnostics, treatment and professionalism.
How Will My Foot Health Practitioner Treat My Corns?
Your foot health practitioner (FHP), prior to any physical treatment, will be interested in your footwear. They will ascertain whether your chosen footwear is suitable for your feet, they will also study your walking gait and life style. This is important in identifying the cause of your corns. It is possible that your corns are not being caused by any of these, and so further diagnostics will then be considered. Your FHT will be aware of the fact that your medical history and genetics can also play a part in the sufferance of foot corns and may question you accordingly.
Satisfying themselves of the cause and your individual medical requirements, your FHP can then administer the appropriate treatment. Initially, after bathing and sterilizing your feet, your FHP will remove excess thickened or dead skin around the center of the corn using a sterilized blade. You should never attempt to self-administer this treatment; your practitioner has been trained to undertake this process without breaching any of the tiny blood vessels within the epidermis.
Where appropriate, suitable pads will be used to relieve pressure on the affected area, this will help to alleviate the discomfort experienced by the sufferer and aid the healing process.
Although this professional treatment is vital for the removal of corns, it should be noted that they do not go away overnight. Depending on the severity of your condition, your FHP may recommend further follow up treatment.
A professional practitioner will also give you preventative guidance aimed at limiting the risk of any further sufferance from corns. Many skilled foot health professionals now look upon prevention as a major part of their professional expertise. Practitioners, like Rebekah Henning, take prevention very seriously, keeping themselves up to date with the very latest in preventative therapy, and she strongly believes in educating and guiding her clients along a path to healthy feet that require the very minimal treatment.
There is one clinic which is becoming a leading exponent of conjunctive therapy. That is to say, they not only give provision to professional treatment and cures for foot conditions such as corns, but also lean strongly on the preventative aspect with the view of reducing the numbers of incidences of this, all too often avoidable, common complaint.
Rebekah Henning treats painful corns in her private clinic, Feet@Theclinic, Loughborough, Leicestershire. This clinic has been furnished with modern equipment and gives great emphasis to care and safety of its clients, whilst also being an environment which is welcoming, almost homely.
The clinic also has an ideal location in the town of Loughborough, this local gives it a large catchment area including Leicester, Nottingham, Grantham and Burton on Trent, all of which have excellent road links to the town. The expansive, outlying rural areas are also within easy reach of the clinic.
Feet@Theclinic, with its large demographic catchment area, has been able to reach out to many people that have felt their quality of life has been blighted by foot problems, such as corns. Through the clinics innovative conjunctive therapy, lives are being improved now and for the future. If you have, or suspect you may be developing, corns, one simple call is all it takes to improve your life now, and in the years ahead.