Courses for Kids
Free study material
Offline Centres
Store Icon


share icon
share icon

What is a Callus?

Let's find out what callus means! Calluses are thick, hard patches of skin. Calluses are larger and have a more irregular (spread out) shape than corns. Calluses are most likely to appear on the bottom of your foot in the bony areas that bear your body weight – your heel, big toe, ball of your foot, as well as along the side of your foot. It is normal to have some callus formation on the bottom of your foot.

Callus skin is also commonly seen on the hands. Calluses, for example, form where there is repeated friction or rubbing, such as on the tips of guitar players' fingers or the hands of gymnasts, weightlifters, or craftspeople.

[Image will be uploaded soon]

Corns as well as calluses are the result of a buildup of hard, thick skin. Although these hardened areas of skin can appear anywhere on your body, they are most commonly found on your feet, hands, or fingers.

How Do Corns and Calluses Form?

Corns and calluses form as a result of repeated friction, rubbing, or irritation, as well as pressure on the skin. Corns and calluses typically develop on the bony or prominent areas of the foot. They (more likely calluses) form on the hands in areas where there is constant rubbing against the skin.

Corns and calluses are hardened layers of skin that your body uses to protect the underlying skin from irritation and pressure.

Who is More Likely to Get Corn or Calluses Frequently?

  • If you already have medical conditions that alter the normal alignment of the bones in your feet, you are more likely to develop corns or calluses. Let’s see for example, foot arthritis, bunions, bone spurs, or hammertoes.

  • You have one or more of the corns and calluses discussed in this article.

  • You walk around without socks.

  • You're wearing shoes that are too small for your feet.

  • You are a smoker.

What are the Most Likely Causes of Corns as Well as Calluses?

Corns as well as calluses have many of the same causes. These include:

  • Shoes that don't fit correctly. The most common cause of corn on the tops of the feet is this. Shearing, friction, and pressure are caused by shoes that are too tight or have areas that rub against your skin. Women who wear high-heeled shoes frequently develop calluses on the balls of their feet as a result of the downward pressure on this area when walking.

  • Long periods of standing, walking, or running

  • Physical hobbies, sports, or work/labor that puts strain on your feet.

  • Going barefoot.

  • Socks are not required to be worn with footwear.

  • Having socks and/or shoe linings that slip as well as bunch up under your feet when you're wearing shoes.

  • Walking incorrectly entails walking too heavily on the inner or outer edge of your foot.

  • Physical hobbies, sports, or work/labor that cause repeated friction on a skin area on your hands or areas on your fingers.

How are Corn and Calluses Diagnosed?

Corns and calluses are simple to identify. There are no tests required. Typically, a simple visual examination of the skin is all that is required. Your doctor may inquire about your job, the amount of walking and standing you do, and the activities in which you participate. If you have a corn or callus on your foot, your doctor may ask you to walk so that he or she can check your posture and the way you walk, as well as inquire about your footwear and how you care for your feet.

Treatment of Corns and Calluses

Corns and calluses are typically treated by avoiding the repetitive actions that caused them to form. Wearing properly fitting shoes, using protective pads, and taking other self-care measures can help you resolve them.

If a corn or callus persists or becomes painful despite your self-care efforts, the following medical treatments may help, they have been listed  below:

  • Excess skin is removed. During an office visit, your doctor can use a scalpel to trim thickened skin or a large corn. Don't try this at home because it could result in an infection.

  • Medication for removing calluses. Patches can be obtained without a prescription. Your doctor will advise you on how frequently you should replace this patch. He or she may advise you to smooth away dead skin with a pumice stone, nail file, or emery board before applying a new patch. You can also obtain a prescription for salicylic acid gel to be applied to larger areas.

  • Inserts for shoes. If you have a foot deformity, your doctor may recommend custom-made padded shoe inserts (orthotics) to prevent recurring corns or calluses.

  • Surgical procedure. In rare cases, your doctor may recommend surgery to realign a bone that is causing friction.

Want to read offline? download full PDF here
Download full PDF
Is this page helpful?

FAQs on Callus

1. What are Home Remedies For Callous?

Answer. If you don't have any underlying health issues, try the following remedies to help clear up a corn or callus:

Make use of over-the-counter pads. Protect the area where a corn or callus has formed with a pad. When using over-the-counter (nonprescription) liquid corn removers or medicated corn pads, exercise caution. These contain salicylic acid, which can irritate healthy skin and cause infection, particularly in people who have diabetes or other conditions that cause poor blood flow.

Soak your hands or feet in water. Corns and calluses can be softened by soaking your hands or feet in warm, soapy water. This may make removing the thickened skin easier. Skin that has been thinned and thickened. Rub a corn or callus with a pumice stone, nail file, emery board, or washcloth during or after bathing to help remove a layer of toughened skin. Trim the skin without using a sharp object. If you have diabetes, you need to avoid using a pumice stone.

Skin should be moisturised. To keep your skin soft, apply moisturiser to your hands and feet. Put on a pair of comfortable shoes and socks. Wear well-fitting, cushioned shoes as well as socks until your corn or callus has gone away.

2. How Do You Spell Callusing?

Answer. Callus/ Callous

These words appear to be the same, but they are not. A callus is a rough patch of skin on the skin's surface. Callous, an adjective meaning "insensitive to the feelings of others," is formed by adding an o for "offensive." Callus and callous share a Latin root that means "hardened," but callus is a noun and the word callous is an adjective.