Calluses and Corns - Home Treatment
The initial treatment for
calluses and corns usually is self-treatment at home.
This includes carefully choosing your footwear, using a pumice stone, and using
over-the-counter (nonprescription) salicylic acid
If you have
peripheral arterial disease,
peripheral neuropathy, or other conditions that cause
circulatory problems or numbness, talk to your doctor before you try any
treatment for calluses or corns.
For treatment options, you
- Reduce the size of a callus or corn by soaking
your foot in warm water and then
using a pumice stone to lightly wear away the dead skin. Never cut the corn or
callus yourself, especially if you have diabetes or other conditions that cause
circulatory problems or numbness.
- Wear shoes that fit well and are
roomy, with wide and deep toe boxes (the area that
surrounds the toes). A wider toe box relieves pressure on soft corns by keeping
the toes from pressing against each other. A deeper toe box relieves pressure
on hard corns by keeping the toes from pressing against the top of the shoe.
Thicker soles can help relieve pressure on calluses when you are walking. For
more information, see:
- Foot problems: Finding the right shoes.
protective padding, such as
orthotic shoe inserts, to cushion the toe or hold the
foot and toes in a more comfortable position. Your doctor can help you position
the pads on your feet or in your shoes.
salicylic acid to soften calluses or corns. You can
then rub them off with a pumice stone. Some doctors advise against using
salicylic acid because it can damage surrounding skin. If you use salicylic
acid, be sure to apply it only to the callus or corn and not to the surrounding
- Take care of your feet. Wash them regularly, and use lotion
to keep them from drying out. Dry skin makes it easier for a callus to crack
Calluses and corns can be prevented by
reducing or eliminating pressure on the skin.
- Wear roomy shoes that fit
- Wear socks that fit. Loose socks can bunch up and cause
- Wear gloves while using a tool such as a garden spade or
rake. If you expose other parts of your body to friction, wear appropriate
padding. For example, if you are on your knees laying carpet, wear knee