What is Hammer toe?
A hammer toe is a deformity that causes the toe to bend downward instead of pointing forward.
Causes and Symptoms:
It can affect any toe and is often caused by wearing high heels, narrow -pointy shoes and wearing shoes that are too small. This can lead to pain, discomfort, and difficulty walking. It can also cause calluses or corns on the affected toe due to the constant rubbing or pressure on the toe.
It is important to note that early intervention is key in treating hammer toe. Wearing properly fitting shoes and addressing any foot conditions can help prevent the condition from worsening. Custom orthotics, padding, and exercises can also help alleviate pain and improve muscle strength. In more severe cases, surgery may be required to correct the deformity. It's always best to consult with a podiatrist or orthopedic doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment plan.
WHEN and WHAT:
When it's mild: You can correct a hammer toe caused by inappropriate footwear by wearing shoes that are the right size, shape and width for your feet. This can help alleviate the pressure on the affected joint and prevent the deformity from getting worse. Wearing shoes with a wide toe box, zero drop and a comfortable fit will help.
When it's severe: It's important to note that, in more severe cases, additional treatments such as Physical Therapy, custom orthotics or even surgery may be required for the correction of hammer toe. It's always best to consult with a podiatrist or orthopedic doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment.
1. Toe distract and mobilize: find a comfortable seat and place your foot on your knee or on the ground in front of you. Using your hands, gently straighten out the toe and then pull it away from the foot, creating a space between the toe and the foot. While maintaining this traction slowly extend the toe for 10 repetitions. This exercise is a good place to start if you have severe foot pain or difficulty walking, as it is simple and can be done while seated. The purpose of this exercise is to improve flexibility and create space in the joint.
2. Toe yoga: To do this exercise, sit in a chair with your feet on the floor. Then, lift your toes upwards as high as you can without straining, keeping the foot flat on the floor. This exercise helps to strengthen the muscles in your toe and improve flexibility. It is important to avoid straining when performing this exercise, as it is meant to be done with a comfortable range of motion.
3. Toe raises: To perform the exercise, stand with your feet close together and then raise both heels off the ground, keeping your toes on the floor. Hold this position for a moment, then lower your heels back down to the ground. Repeat this exercise for 1 set of 15 reps. daily making sure to keep proper form throughout the movement to avoid injury.
-It is important to wear shoes that fit properly and to address any foot conditions, such as calluses or bunions, to reduce the risk of developing a hammer toe.
-It's also important to take care of your foot health by stretching and strengthening your foot.