What to do about a Hammer Toe
An article posted on Cleveland.com noted that an estimated 60 million people suffer from hammer toe deformities in the U.S., according to iDATA Research, a global pharmaceutical firm. An article posted on dailymail.co.uk noted that around three million people in Britain also have hammer toes.
The first thing to do about a hammer toe is to confirm this is what you have and to find out why you are suffering from this painful joint problem. A quick visit to Toronto Podiatrist, Sheldon H. Nadal, D.P.M. should confirm the diagnosis. He will then be able to explain the treatment options available which will vary depending on the severity of the condition.
Whether your hammer toes are the result of arthritis, a hereditary or systemic condition, or simply poor-fitting footwear, your shoes will be your starting point. Appropriate footwear that fits well is an important part of your long-term treatment. Your shoes need to be broad enough and deep enough to give your toes plenty of wiggle room. If your curled up toes are being rubbed by your shoes, you may want to try wearing silicone sleeves to diffuse the pressure. You may also find that the bent toe (or toes) has displaced the fat pad on the sole of your foot so you feel like you are walking on the bones. Your Podiatrist can make insoles or orthotics to redistribute the pressure and help straighten the toes and you may need to take anti-inflammatory pills, but this may not be enough.
Surgery may be necessary when conservative treatments fail and pain persists; a thorough examination and x-rays will confirm this need. A number of procedures exist to correct hammer toes and your Podiatrist, Sheldon H. Nadal, will determine the best option for you. This may involve release of tendons and realignment of bones to straighten your toes and give you long term comfort. This can be done with local anesthetic through very small openings. This can result in much less soft tissue trauma, pain and swelling.