Corns are one of the most frequent foot problems, causing sharp pain under pressure and when touched. Corns are caused by the thickening of the skin (callus), formed on the foot’s overburdened and excessively used parts. The skin is protecting itself against the repeated rubbing and pressure by creating a thicker layer of skin, which does not only appear on the surface but also under the skin, where it ends in a cone-shaped core. This deformation under the skin presses on the nerve ends, causing severe pain.
- There are two common types of corn:
- the hard corn, which usually develops on the sole under the heads of the metatarsals and on incurved toes,
- the soft corn between the toes.
The former is caused by static problems and bad footwear, whereas the latter is clearly caused by inappropriate footwear.
Prevention is the best way of combating corns, which means wearing comfortable shoes with heels of the right height.
If a callus has already developed, it can be removed using a skin rasp or file, but in more serious cases it is best to see a specialist. Using custom orthotic insoles can offer relief from even the most stubborn corn. Restoring the foot’s balance, the orthotics relieve pressure on the most overburdened parts, which eliminates the cause of the callus. Even corns with a thick core will disappear by using an expertly made orthotic insole with a cushioned pad at the right place. The corn should be removed by a specialist before wearing an insole, but then it will not return again.