Let me tell you a story...
This week a patient came into the office with her shoes. She told me that she felt a rock in her shoes and can't find it. She was hoping that I cold find what was wrong with her shoes to make them comfortable. I asked her if she feels the discomfort when she is wearing other shoes. She said that she does and even when she's barefoot...if she didn't know better, she swore there were rocks in her socks.
I don't share this story to poke fun at her. On the contrary it's something that happens quite often! When you have pain, and you can't find the source, you will search for an explanation that makes the most sense to you. In this case, the pain had nothing to do with her shoes, it is because of thick and painful corns and calluses on the bottom of the foot.
A corn and callus is a thickened area of hard, dead skin that forms because of pressure. Most commonly a callus occurs on the bottom of your foot and is superficial and broad. A corn is smaller and deeper and usually found on top or between your toes. Because of the depth, these are more likely to be painful. Corns can also form on the bottom of your feet...and yes, they are painful and feel like you have rocks in your socks.
Corns are best controlled with protective felt or gel padding. This padding offloads the thickened area, relieves the pressure, and slows or prevents the corn from returning. In our office, we use and offer a number of Dr. Jill's foot pads, the highest quality pads on the market. Dr. Jill's pads are also available online. Padding is also helpful for calluses when necessary. Many times, calluses can be controlled with a custom orthotic, an insole designed to balance the feet and neutralize the forces that cause your calluses to form.
You can also work on your calluses at home. Many people use a sharp callus file, such as a Ped-Egg to control their corns or calluses. I strongly discourage this, since I see many injuries and infections from their use. You should soften your calluses with a strong moisturizing cream, such as Calicylic Creme, and use a Pumi-Bar to pare down the newly-formed dead skin in the shower each day.
If you have a feeling like there are rocks in your socks, it's time to stop looking for them! Contact our Houston Podiatry office for an immediate appointment. The treatment is painless and you will find relief the minute you step on the floor.