Treating Hammertoes
By Wilmette Foot and Ankle Clinic
July 12, 2018
Category: Foot Issues
Tags: Hammertoes  

What your podiatrist in Wilmette wants you to knowHammertoes

You’ve probably heard of hammertoes, but if you’ve never had one, you may not know it can cause pain, affect your ability to walk, and make it difficult to wear shoes. Dr. Gary Rogers at NorthShore University HealthSystem in Wilmette, IL, wants to share the facts about this annoying condition and how to prevent and treat it.

Hammertoes typically occur in the second, third, or fourth toes, affecting the middle toe joint. The middle joint begins to bend inward, causing the toe to protrude outward, eventually resembling a hammer. Hammertoes are caused by wearing shoes that are too narrow and crush your toes together. High-heels add to the problem by pushing the toes forward, which is why hammertoes occur more frequently in women.

The easy solution is to prevent hammertoes from occurring by wearing shoes with enough room for your toes. Make sure your shoes don’t crush, crowd, or bend your toes.

You should also keep your toes flexible by manually stretching your toes. Try exercising your toes by picking up small objects from the floor using only your toes.

There are some things you can do at home to get relief from the pain of hammertoes. Placing pads, cushions, and other cushioning devices can help ease the friction of your toe rubbing against the inside of your shoe. Over-the-counter pain and anti-inflammatory medication can also help.

Hammertoes can become very painful, so it’s best to visit your podiatrist for a permanent solution. Common treatments your podiatrist may recommend include:

  • Corticosteroid injections around the joint to decrease inflammation, swelling, and pain
  • Custom fit orthotics or footwear to correct an imbalance of the muscles and tendons in your foot and toes
  • Toe splints and other devices to correct the alignment of your toes
  • Surgical treatment to straighten your toe and correct the alignment of your foot

Don’t let a hammertoe affect your ability to enjoy life. You can get relief from the pain by calling Dr. Rogers at NorthShore University HealthSystem in Wilmette, IL. Call now and feel better!

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