Hammer Toe is a condition where crooked or bent under ‘claw’ or ‘mallet’ toes irritate toe tips and tops; rub, overlap or underlap adjacent toes to make standing and walking uncomfortable. This can cause a wide variety of problems and can be very painful for those who suffer from the condition.
Please remember I am not a doctor, and its best to consult your medical specialist for a complete diagnosis, but I can provide you some information that might help relieve some of the discomfort you are feeling. Go to Pedifix.com for more details on product suggestions.
There are two different types of hammer toe:
1) Flexible hammer toe, which can usually be aligned or relieved by using pads or manual techniques.
2) Rigid hammer toe, which is stiffened & unresponsive to standard techniques. This type of condition is much more challenging to correct.
The condition is usually caused by an imbalance in the muscles, tendons, and ligaments that align the toe & typically hold it in place. The most common causes of hammer toe development include:
Wearing shoes that are too tight, too narrow, or too small for your feet do not allow enough room and can cause toes to bend and hold them out-of-place. The rubbing and friction can lead to corns & calluses, often making the pain and discomfort of the hammer toe even worse. This is especially true when wearing high heeled shoes. Frequent use can affect your ability to straighten out your toes normally, even after first changing over to broader and roomier footwear. An unexpected injury can also result in a hammer toe, like a sudden impact on the foot. Heredity, bio-mechanics, or even arthritis and diabetes are also factors. Your genetics can cause significant nerve and muscle damage, resulting in a hammer toe.
If any of the above symptoms sound familiar, you could already have a hammer toe. These symptoms can include red, swollen, or painfully sensitive toes that get more irritated when you put on shoes. Evidence of corns or calluses around toe joints is another common indicator of a hammer toe.
A hammer toe condition can also limit your mobility. The toe may feel stiff, painful, and difficult to move. You may also feel pain on the ball of your foot, directly below the affected toe.
Treatment Options for Hammer Toe:
There are usually conservative options available to treat most hammer toe conditions.
Wear better-fitting shoes with a wider toe box is a great start. It will allow your toes more room and often alleviate pressure, usually relieving some of the pain.
Utilize one of the many felt, foam or Visco-GEL® cushions by PediFix® to help relieve pressure on toe tips and tops, easing forefoot pain and make walking more comfortable. They are perfect for supporting bend under, hammer, claw, mallet, and arthritic toes by minimizing the deformity and adding protection to reduce pressure and friction. Sometimes, the problem toes can cross over or overlap the toe next to them, causing pain and discomfort. We also have effective products available for those with crossover toes and hammer toe, crossover toe combinations.
Surgery is another possible option in more extreme cases and should be decided upon by you and your doctor.
If you have questions about any of the quality hammer toe products from PediFix, please reach out to us at pedifix.com or by phone at 1-800-PEDIFIX (733-4349) to speak directly to a product specialist today.
PediFix Medical Footcare. 256 Ways to Relieve Foot Pain.