Not only a nuisance for physical beauty, cracked feet resulted from untreated calluses can trigger severe discomfort and pain. There are also couples of other risks related to cracks or fissures on feet, such as:
- Bacterial infection, as a result of an exposed open wound in a form of crack and fissures from calluses.
- Severe pain while standing for a long period as a result of pressure on the cracked calluses on feet.
- Bleeding following seriously cracked calluses on feet.
Callous-induced cracks usually occur on the bottom of feet, especially on heels. Certain conditions make it possible for calluses on feet to develop into cracks and fissures that are painful and embarrassing at the same time. People who are obese, spend the time standing, or wear open-back shoes or sandals are prone to calluses on feet that develop into cracked heels. This condition is more difficult to treat than usual calluses, as the skin surface is broken and thus, it becomes an open wound.
Treatments for cracked calluses on feet
Calluses develop into cracks if the skin on feet is too dry. Performing foot care properly in daily basis will be helpful in preventing cracked callused feet. However, if cracked feet from calluses have already been a problem, there are some steps to be taken in performing self-care for the problem at home, such as:
Softening the cracked region
This is the initial step to take before performing any treatments for callus-induced cracks on feet. This step is important as it will soften the area, which is over-dried and thus, cracked. To soften cracked heels, soak them in a basin filled with warm water and Epsom salt for 15 minutes.
Reducing crack thickness
In order to remove cracked heels or foot bottom caused by calluses, it is essential to reduce its thickness resulted from dead skin and debris built-up. Gently scrub the area using a pumice stone. Since cracked callused feet are open wounds, remember not to over-scrubbing the area, as this may cause irritation and lead to infection.
Sufficient moisture is the key to not only get rid of cracked callused feet, but also to prevent calluses from occurring at all. Prevent excessive dryness to the heels and feet is an essential key of preserving its moisture. To do this, always pat the heels dry after washing them. Heels left wet will cause even drier skin area. A good moisturizer is also beneficial for keeping callused feet hydrated. You can apply either store-bought moisturizer or ground a cucumber and apply the juice onto the cracked callused feet for more natural moisturizing ingredient.
Keeping the cracked region covered
When being treated, it is important for ay cracked callused feet to be covered to prevent bacterial infestation and preserve its moisture. Hence, it is important to put on socks after applying moisturizing cream onto cracked heels and feet. Keep the area covered overnight to prevent it from getting cracked worse.
Badly cracked callused feet may often result in bleeding that may cause infection. If this happens, soak the feet in warm water and a spoonful of salt. Salt is a natural anti-bacterial that will promote bleeding to stop. Dry the feet dry afterwards and cover it with sterilized gauze after applying antibiotic ointment. Avoid standing too long and wearing open-back shoes or sandals as they may aggravate cracked heels.
When to see a doctor
In most cases, cracked heels can be treated at home. However, see a doctor if you are suffering from diabetes and other illness that cause limited blood circulation to the feet. You might also need medical debridement if despite all performed treatments, the cracked callused feet are getting worse. You also need to see a doctor if the pain is elevating and causes extreme discomfort whenever you are standing or walking. If any drainage such as pus is present, seek immediate medical attention, as the cracks might have been infected. An infected callused feet will cause extreme discomfort and pain and may make you unable to wear shoes. Bacteria present in the skin may worsen the infection that will make the wound worse.