A hammer toe is caused by a deformity in the joints around the toes, leading the toes to bend so that they are crooked, resembling the shape of a hammer. This can put a great deal of pressure on the joints and bones around the problem area, and hammertoes are likely to become progressively worse over time.
Hammertoes may be the result of genetics, as it is possible to inherit tendencies such as flat feet, which make the foot more unstable and put greater stress on the joints, but the most common causes include poorly fitted shoes, a traumatic injury to the toes, and arthritis.
How Can I Treat Hammertoes?
If your hammertoes are pronounced, you will probably also be suffering from corns and calluses, as these tend to form where there is pressure and friction on the skin of the feet. You will probably need to see a medical professional or a podiatrist to discuss your options, and you may be offered surgery, but if you are keen to prevent the problem or to treat the early stages of hammertoes at home, you can try the following:
- Change your footwear. Many people, especially women, do not realise that the shoes they wear on a daily basis can cause extensive damage to their feet. High heeled shoes, and those with narrow toe boxes, are the biggest culprits, crushing the toes together and causing problems such as hammertoes and bunions. If you are not wearing comfortable, supportive shoes that fit you well on a daily basis, we recommend visiting a specialist shoe store like Foot Solutions for expert advice and help in finding footwear that is suited to your feet, your gait and your lifestyle. If you already have hammertoes, you may find that you need a wider style of shoe to accommodate the deformity.
- Try custom arch supports. Hammertoes result from uneven pressure on the joints in the feet and toes, and relieving this pressure can help to prevent the problem from worsening. Talk to us about our custom arch supports, which are designed to fit your feet perfectly and support them in all the right places, and feel the difference in your comfort level!
- Stretch your feet. Getting used to stretching your feet on a daily basis can be very helpful in preventing several foot problems, including deformities such as hammertoes. Picking up objects from the floor with your toes, or trying to pull a towel towards you with your toes, can help to stretch out the tendons and muscles in the feet and ensure that these are in great shape.
- Take care of your feet. A daily footcare routine can be very helpful in looking after your feet and remembering to treat them with care. You can remove corns and calluses by gently filing them with a pumice stone or foot file, and a good moisturising oil can be massaged in every day to keep your feet feeling great.
Prevent Foot Problems With Custom Arch Supports
A visit to Foot Solutions can transform the way you feel about your feet, enabling you to feel comfortable and enjoy an active lifestyle once more. We carry out a range of observations and make recommendations for a holistic solution that often includes comfort socks, custom arch supports and good footwear.
Pop in and visit us at Foot Solutions, or book an appointment online now, and start enjoying great foot health today!