What are they?
Corns are a thickening of the skin, usually on the toes, in response to excessive pressure. As the skin gets thicker they become more painful.
How to treat them?
It does not matter what is done for corns, they will always come back unless the cause is removed. That cause is excessive pressure. That excessive pressure either comes from the footwear or from a toe deformity (such as a hammer toe). Corns do not have roots, they keep coming back as the cause is still there.
Do not use the medicated corn plaster that you can buy at the pharmacy or drug store. They only contain an acid that eats whatever you put it on. It cannot tell what is corn and what is normal skin. Unless the cause is removed, it will still come back again.
To remove the cause, you need to remove the pressure. This either means changing the toe (and without surgery, that’s not going to be easy) or change the shoes. The shoes are the cause of the pressure. You need to change them to a better fitting shoe so the pressure on the corn is gone.
The non-medicated pads that have cavities or accommodation’s to keep pressure of the area of the corn can be helpful, but you need to keep using them long term as long as the excessive pressure is still there.
When to see the doctors?
If changing the shoe is not enough, especially if the toe deformity is bad enough, you may need to see the Podiatrist. They can either regularly debride (cut or scrape) the corn or give advice about surgery to fix the shape of the toe, so the shoe does not cause excessive pressure on the spot.