Heel calluses are not normally painful, but in some cases, they can become very painful and debilitating when the cracks deepen into bleeding heel fissures that make it difficult to walk or even just stand up. The cracks can also be an avenue for a bacterial or fungal infection to take hold, so be sure to see your foot doctor to avoid these complications.
Oftentimes cracked heels start off from having very dry skin and this is made worse by a variety of other factors.
Some of the causes and contributing factors of severely cracked heels and fissures include the following:
- Standing and walking all day on hard surfaces
- Being overweight
- Thyroid problems
- Estrogen deficiency
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Psoriasis and eczema
- Nutrient and vitamin deficiencies
- Circulation abnormalities
- Hereditary influences
Home treatments for difficult heel fissures are not usually very effective, so if your efforts are not providing relief, you will need to contact your foot specialist to perform a complete diagnosis and to recommend the best course of treatment.
Treatments for heel fissures can include the following:
- Removal of the hardened skin without causing bleeding. Have this done by your foot doctor can help avoid complications.
- Cracks can be held together with tape and braces to help them heal faster.
- Orthotic shoe inserts including a heel cup can be effective at preventing the skin of the heel from expanding sideways and cracking further.
- Ointments and prescription creams will soften the skin.
- Drink healthy fluids throughout the day to keep your skin hydrated.
If you are experiencing pain and discomfort from heel fissures, seeing your podiatrist is the best way to receive the proper diagnosis and treatment. Call Syracuse Podiatry in East Syracuse, New York. Our skilled podiatrists Dr. Ryan L. D’Amico and Dr. Payel Ghosh will help you diagnose and treat your foot or ankle condition. Call 315-446-3668 or contact us for an appointment today.