How Can I Prevent Hammertoes?

Hammertoes can put a damper on your normal day-to-day life. The signature deformity, when one of the small toes (most often the second toe) bends and forms a “hammer” looking shape, can impede your ability to walk and run, causing pain and an unbalanced gait. Getting hammertoes corrected is usually best done with mini-incision hammertoe surgeries which are minimally invasive and have a much shorter post-op time than traditional surgeries. Prevention is the best way to treat this condition, however, and this article will cover the best way to prevent hammertoes from happening in the first place.

What Causes Hammertoes?

Wearing incorrect or improper footwear is the most common reason why people develop hammertoes. The worst culprits are shoes that are too narrow for the foot or high heels. These types of shoes deform the foot, and when worn often for extended periods of time, can cause severe damage to the feet. Narrow shoes often cause bunions to form, pushing the bones of the feet together in unnatural ways. Bunions are often related to hammertoes and may cause them to form or worsen. High-heeled shoes disrupt the normal gait and shape of the foot, squishing the toes together and forcing them into a painful, misformed shape. Both of these types of shoes should be avoided to prevent bunions and hammertoes from forming.

Some hammertoes are flexible and still retain some movement, but others are rigid, especially in severe cases. Wearing roomy shoes and toe splints and guards can help relieve pain and prevent hammertoes from getting worse, but only surgery can actually correct this condition.

What Is the Best Surgery For Hammertoes?

If prevention is no longer an option for you and you already have hammertoes, surgery is the only way to truly correct this condition. The best kind of surgery for most individuals with hammertoes is mini-incision hammertoe surgery. Everyone’s hammertoes are unique and should be evaluated as such, but this type of surgery is highly successful and recommended by most podiatrists. 

Minimally invasive hammertoe surgery allows a skilled and highly trained podiatrist to create a mini-incision on your foot, through which they can fix the hammertoe and/or related bunion. This surgery has only a 6-8 week post-op recovery time, and you can bear 100% weight on your foot the same day after surgery. Because there are no pins or staples required to hold bones and muscles in place, there is very little downtime. Walking should be limited and only performed in short distances for the first few weeks, but after six weeks, patients are generally back to normal.

Mini incision hammertoe surgery requires a highly skilled podiatrist with extensive training. Podiatrists who offer this surgery are in high demand due to the superior nature of this type of hammertoe surgery.

How to Find a Mini Incision Hammertoe Surgery Foot Doctor in New York City (NYC)

Finding a podiatrist that can perform minimally invasive foot surgeries can be difficult. If you are located in the Brooklyn, Manhattan, or Queens areas of New York City (NYC), Best Foot Doctor has locations in your area. Our expert podiatrist has many years of experience with this surgery and our staff can help evaluate your condition and provide guidance on preparing for surgery. If you have any questions, please give our offices a call to schedule an appointment.

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