Blisters: collection of fluid in a “bubble” under the outer layer of the skin.
Callus: usually painless thickening of skin caused by repeated pressure or irritations a form to protect a skin area from injury caused by rubbing or squeezing. Pressure causes cells in the irritated area to grow at a faster rate, leading to overgrowth.
- Fluid collection under the superficial layer.
- Sensitivity to pressure against the blister.
- Redness and swelling around the blister.
- A rough, thickened area of skin that appears after repeated pressure or irritation.
Causes of Injury:
- Repeated injury to the skin on the feet due to excessive perspiration, increased heat, and friction of socks and shoes. Anything that intensifies rubbing can cause the irritations, including a faster pace, heat and moisture-induced swelling, poorly fitted shoes, and foot abnormalities, such as bunions, heel spurs and hammer toes.
Blister Short Term Treatment:
- Do not pop blisters – it creates an open wound that can easily get infected.
- If the blister ruptures on its own, first wash hands and blistered area with antibacterial soap and pat dry.
- CAREFULLY remove torn skin with alcohol treated scissors.
- Apply antibiotic ointment, and cover with bandage.
Callus Short Term Treatment:
- Soak the area in warm water to soften it before rubbing.
- Rub the thickened area with a pumice stone, sandstone, or callus file to carefully and gradually remove it.
- Do not cut it with a razor.
- Cleanse the area with soap and water.
For both blisters and calluses remove the source of irritation. Discard ill-fitting shoes. Use pads with holes cur out slightly larger than affected area to reduce pressure on irritated skin.
Long Term Treatment:
To prevent blisters and calluses from recurring:
- Wear shoes that fit. Shoes that are too small will cause irritation under the toes and on the ends of toenails. With athletic shoes, there should be a thumb nail’s width of space between the toes and the end of the box. Check for rough seems inside the shoe.
- Choose blister free socks. Synthetic socks wick moisture away from the skin. Cotton may be lighter, but it retains fluid. Don’t just pull the socks on; fit them to your foot. Your socks should fit smoothly, with no extra fabric at the toes or heels. Try turning your socks inside out, so the seams don’t rub against your toes. Wear a double layered sock or two pairs of socks so the friction occurs between the layers, rather than between the sock and skin.
- Maintain proper moisture. Dust shoes with talcum powder or rub feet with lubricating lotions or creams to form a protective shield between your skin and shoes.