Does Hammertoe Interfere With Walking or Other Activities? Or Does
The Constant Rubbing Cause Sores & Ulceration?
What Is Hammertoe?
A hammertoe has an abnormal bend in the middle joint of a toe. Deformity of the
middle joint of your toe, hammer toe produces a clenched, claw-like appearance in
the affected toe. The tendons in the toe become abnormally contracted which
causes the toe to bend downward, forcing the joint to protrude upward.
What Is Mallet Toe?
Mallet toe, also a toe joint deformity, occurs when the end joint of a toe becomes
bent downward, so that the toe curls underneath itself. In both situations the
affected joints are stiff and usually the toe cannot be straightened out. If the toe
suffers constant rubbing against shoes it may cause a painful corn to develop
over the joint of the affected toe.
Hammer and mallet toes can develop in any of your toes, however, are most likely
to occur in the toe next to your big toe. Mallet toe affects the joint nearest your
toenail. Hammer toe deformities can be very painful and limit your toe's range of
motion or even need surgery.
What Causes Hammertoe?
Hammertoe usually affects women who wear high heels or shoes with a narrow,
tight or pointed toe shape which can crowd your toes into a space that's not large
enough for them to lie comfortably flat. The design of this style of footwear
squeezes your toes into the front of your shoe, causing them to be bent into an
unnatural position. It is this curled toe position that can eventually persist even
when you're barefoot. Wearing shoes that are too short can also cause hammer
Injury to your toe where you stub, jam or break a toe can also lead to the
development of hammertoe or mallet toe.
Nerve injuries or disorders can also cause hammertoe or mallet toe and are more
common in people who suffer with nerve damage in their feet. This is more
frequent in those patients who live with such medical problems as stroke or
diabetes and peripheral neuropathy.
What Are The Symptoms Of Hammertoe and Mallet Toe?
Hammertoe and mallet toe have an abnormal bend in the joints of one or more of
your toes. Moving your affected toe may be difficult or painful. Painful corns and
calluses can also be caused by the friction of your toe rubbing against the inside
of your shoes. Delicate skin can be damaged and perspiration and unpleasant
odour can add to your discomfort and impact upon overall foot health.
Factors That Increase Your Risk of Developing Hammertoe and
Mallet toe Include:
~ Your age since the risk of hammertoe and mallet toe increases with age.
~ Women are much more likely to develop hammertoe or mallet toe.
~ The length of your second toe. If your second toe is longer than your big toe, it's
at higher risk of hammertoe or mallet toe.
~ Long-term diabetes mellitus can cause nerve damage in your feet and lead to
Lifestyle and Home Remedies
Wearing well-designed and comfortable footwear may ease your hammertoe foot
pain. Low-heeled shoes with a deep, wide toe box and flexible material covering
the toes can also help. Ensure you allow a centimetre (or about a half-inch) of
space between your longest toe and the inside tip of your shoe. Allowing
adequate space for your toes will help relieve pressure and pain.
Podiatrists recommend you avoid over-the-counter corn-removal products as
many contain acids which cause severe skin irritation. Do not shave or cut out an
unsightly corn from your toe because foot wounds can easily become badly
infected. Foot infections can be very difficult to treat, especially if you also suffer
with diabetes or poor circulation.
How Can I Prevent Hammertoe?
Wear wide, comfortable shoes that have plenty of room for the toes.
What Is The Best Treatment for Hammertoe?
Relieving the pain and pressure of hammertoe and mallet toe may involve
changing your footwear, wearing far infrared socks with negative ion therapy to
improve circulation, protect delicate skin and provide natural, anti-bacterial skin
care to help relieve the pain of hammertoe.
If you have a more severe case of hammertoe or mallet toe, your doctor may
recommend surgery if pain persists despite treatment. ThermomedicTM therapy
socks can help speed your recovery and maintain the correct position of surgical
Wear wide shoes with resilient soles. Avoid wearing high-heeled shoes with
narrow, pointed toes.
Prescription orthotic arch supports from your doctor or podiatrist might help to
redistribute weight ocross your foot more evenly which can sometimes help. These
medical devices do not cure hammertoe but may ease the symptoms of hammer
toe or mallet toe.
Our mission at Thermomedic Therapy GarmentsTM is to provide our customers
with the best far infrared therapy socks and natural health care treatments so you
can be assured of the highest level of non-pharmaceutical orthopaedic foot and
As long-term advocates for a conservative, non-operative approach to the
treatment of foot, leg and ankle problems, Thermomedic Therapy GarmentsTM
work hard to design functional therapy garments to assist with remedial physical
therapy and natural, non-invasive therapeutic treatments to help you find safe,
effective and affordable pain relief that can be tailored to suit your own individual
health condition, age and lifestyle.
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