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Corns and Calluses on Children’s Feet: What to do

calluses on children’s feet

It’s easy to think of corns and calluses as more of an adult problem. As we get older and we’ve been on our feet for longer, unsightly and often uncomfortable calluses grow, and we’re not surprised. 

However, what if your child’s feet are developing corns and calluses? Is it normal for kids to have calluses and corns? What causes children to develop corns and calluses? What can you do as a parent to help? 

Causes of Corns and Calluses on Kid’s Feet

If your child has developed a corn or callus on his foot, don’t be alarmed. With high-energy levels and lots of playtime, some children on their feet even more than adults. An active child can easily develop calluses on his feet or even corns. 

Factors that contribute to the growth of corns and calluses on kid’s feet:

  • Your child is an athlete. – Kids who play sports or engage in frequent physical activity are more likely to develop calluses and corns. 
  • Your child wears the same shoes all of the time. – If your child is attached to his favorite pair of shoes and won’t alternate them with other pairs, he may develop calluses and corns from where his favorite pair rubs on his feet day in and day out. 
  • Your child has ill-fitting or improper footwear. – It’ can be tough to keep up with how fast kids’ feet grow, but it’s important to be aware of when its time to get bigger shoes for your child. Cramped or uncomfortable footwear promotes the growth of corns and calluses. 
  • Your child often plays barefoot outside. – Frequent contact with rough surfaces such as rocks and dirt forces your child’s feet to harden in an effort to protect itself. 
  • Your child doesn’t like to wear socks. – Well-chosen socks can do much to prevent painful rubbing of the feet within shoes. When appropriate with your child’s footwear, ask him to wear socks to prevent blisters, calluses, and corns from developing. 

If your child already has corns and calluses, what can be done? 

What to do About Corns and Calluses on a Child’s Feet

There is a handful of simple, relatively painless things you can do at home to help your child manage his corns and calluses. 

Try these steps to reduce your child’s corns and/or calluses:


  • Soak his feet. – Supplement daily foot washing with a weekly 10-15 minute soak in warm water (add Epsom salts or soap, if desired). This will help soften calluses and corns. 


  • File the calluses and corns. – Once the feet have been soaked, use a pumice stone to gently file the top layers of skin. Be careful not to go too deep. 
  • Apply lotion. – A daily application of lotion can help prevent calluses from cracking. Avoid rubbing lotion between the toes. 
  • Use padding. – Placing protective padding within your child’s shoes can help cushion his callus or corn, preventing it from irritation, pain, and growth. 
  • Do not cut the callus or corn. – While light filing is typically safe to do at home, be careful, and do not cut off a callus or corn. 



“If your child has a condition that causes problems with blood flow, such as diabetes, talk to your doctor before you try any home treatment,” recommends Healthwise

Yes, as with any home care, it’s often best to error on the side of caution and seek professional help when needed. 

When to Seek Medical Attention – Fresno Podiatrist 

In some cases, discomfort and pain associated with calluses or corns may develop. In this case, it’s prudent to bring your child to a podiatrist. 

“If you have corns or calluses that are painful or inflamed — or recur or persist despite home care — see your doctor or a foot care specialist, who may suggest medical treatments that can provide relief,” advises Mayo Clinic

Canyon Oaks Foot & Ankle clinics compassionately treat all ages of patients. With offices in Fresno, Visalia, and Porterville, our team is here to help everyone in our community – including children – to have happy feet. Contact us to schedule an appointment

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