If you have a difficult time finding comfortable shoes, your toes always feel like they’re crammed into your footwear, and you’re experiencing consistent foot pain, you might need to find a treatment for hammertoe. There are basic treatments that you can consider, but ultimately long term treatment may involve minimally invasive surgery. If you think surgery will be the category you’ll fall into, your next question will probably have to do with the hammertoe surgery recovery time.
The foot pain caused by your hammertoe is keeping you from doing certain activities you wish you could, but you don’t want to bring anything else upon yourself that is going to keep you from doing even more. In the case of hammertoe treatment that involves surgery, you don’t have to worry about being out for the count.
Causes of hammertoe
A hammertoe is a common foot deformity that occurs when the toe is bent at the middle joint, causing it to curl and resemble – you guessed it – a hammer. It’s usually caused by wearing short, narrow shoes that are too tight and don’t leave enough space for the toes. A hammertoe changes the way the joints react and rub against each other, so treatment is important to consider as soon as possible, or else it could lead to other foot problems.
People who live with hammertoes try to manage them and the foot pain they cause by treating the symptoms. This may involve:
- Changing to better fitting footwear
- Wearing padding to protect the joint sticking out
- Wearing soft insoles to relieve pressure on the toe
- Exercises that help stretch and strengthen the toe muscle
If conservative treatments don’t help, then minimally invasive surgery may be recommended. This is an outpatient procedure that is done by making a very small incision in the bottom of the toe to straighten the joint. The goal of the minimally invasive procedure is to relieve the pain caused by the hammertoe, prevent any other problems as a result of the hammertoe from getting worse, and get the patient back to normal activities as soon as possible.
Hammertoe surgery recovery time
One of the major benefits of a minimally invasive procedure is that it causes significantly less trauma to the foot than traditional surgeries. For this reason, hammertoe surgery recovery time is approximately 3 to 4 weeks. During this time, you’ll leave the office in a walking boot and may need to keep your foot elevated for a few days. Most patients are back into a closed shoe in as little as 10 days! It’s normal to experience some swelling and inflammation. It’s important to start walking when you can, but also rest when you need to.
After you’ve completed the hammertoe surgery recovery period, your toe may still remain slightly bent, but as long as the foot pain is gone, the treatment is a success!
If you think you could benefit from hammertoe treatment, contact a New York podiatrist at Adler Footcare to schedule a consultation. We believe feet shouldn’t hurt and neither should their treatment.