Our podiatrist near Silver Spring often sees patients who have one or more toes bent or curled over instead of the normal forward position. This occurs when one of the two joints of your toe is not held in the proper position by your foot’s muscles, tendons, and ligaments. According to our team at The Podiatry Center, hammertoe refers to an abnormal bend of the toe’s joint near the base, while mallet toe refers to a deformity in the joint closest to your toenail. Both hammertoes and mallet toes usually occur in the second or third toe.
While genetics, nerve damage, or trauma to the foot can certainly be factors related to someone developing a hammertoe, this particular type of foot deformity is more likely caused by wearing poorly fitted footwear, such as high heels, or shoes that aren’t appropriate for the unique shape of your foot. Our podiatrist near Silver Spring knows that over time, moving your affected toe or the pressure from your regular activities may become difficult or painful. In addition, your bent toe continuously rubbing against the inside of your shoe can eventually cause painful calluses and corns to form.
Relief from the pain of walking around with a hammertoe is often just a matter of changing your footwear and using inserts to correctly position your toe in the right direction. Our Silver Spring area podiatrist suggests that patients avoid high heels and instead shop for shoes with plenty of toe room. We also recommend trying on new shoes at the end of the day, when your feet are more likely to be swollen from your daily routine.
Our experienced podiatry team at the Podiatry Center diagnoses hammertoes with a physical exam and x-rays. Patients with advanced cases of hammertoe where one or more toes are severely deformed may need to be treated with corrective surgery.
If you would like to have your hammertoe or another podiatry issue evaluated, please contact our Silver Spring area podiatry office to schedule an appointment today.
The information provided in this article is not meant to be medical advice and is for educational purposes only. If you would like to learn more about this and other topics related to podiatry, feel free to contact The Podiatry Center, with convenient podiatry offices located near Silver Spring, MD, by calling 301.660.8225 or by clicking here.