Gym fanatics might consider a callus to be a trophy that represents their toughness, but it’s worth paying attention to before it’s too late. For those wondering what are calluses, they’re a protective padding of sorts that starts to form on the skin, especially on hands and feet, when it experiences repeated friction or pressure. Lifting weights or running for miles as part of your regular workout being one of the most common contributors.
Using mechanical tools, walking without shoes, wearing tight footwear or socks that rub against your toes, playing stringed instruments such as the guitar, or playing racket sports.
How to prevent and treat calluses
When we first notice calluses on our skin, we shrug them off as being harmless because they are usually painless. However, if not taken care of, they can mean trouble in the long run. Dermatologists Dr. Rohit Batra and Dr. Vandana Punjabi share with us pointers on how to prevent and treat calluses.
1)Those of you who like to lift weights in the gym or are in a profession that requires you to work with tools every day, should wear gloves to prevent friction between your hands and the tool or the weights. Using chalk (powder) in moderation while working out also helps in prevention of calluses.
2)If you expose your calluses to hot water on a regular basis, they will start to peel off, but your skin will need time to heal and grow again. Instead, dip your hands in lukewarm water for 5-10 minutes. This will soften the calluses without damaging the skin. After soaking your hands or toes in warm water, you can use a pumice stone to remove the dead skin.
3)It’s imperative to moisturise your skin on a regular basis if you have calluses. This will slowly soften the skin over the time. If your calluses are too hard, then opt for a cream with salicylic acid, ammonium lactate, or urea.
4)Wear shoes that fit you well but aren’t tight or your toes will be exposed to repeated friction and pressure, leading to calluses. Also, don’t wear shoes without socks.
5)Never use a knife or a razor to remove the calluses; you might end up cutting your skin.