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There are small bone segments that are connected by joints in the toes of each foot. A condition that is referred to as hammertoe occurs when the joint in one of the toes becomes deformed and causes the toe to bend downward, resembling a hammer. Additionally, it may typically affect the toe next to it, and may become painful and uncomfortable. There are several reasons why hammertoe may develop, including wearing poorly fitting footwear, which may generally include shoes with inadequate room for the toes to move freely in, medical conditions such as arthritis, or a genetic disposition. If you feel you may have developed hammertoe, an examination is needed so a proper diagnosis can be determined, which is generally performed by a podiatrist. Treatment options may then be discussed that can include performing gentle foot stretches, which may help to relax the tendons surrounding the affected joint, or having your toe splinted, which may aid in straightening the toes out.

Hammertoe

Hammertoes can be a painful condition to live with. For more information, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor will answer any of your foot- and ankle-related questions.

Hammertoe is a foot deformity that affects the joints of the second, third, fourth, or fifth toes of your feet. It is a painful foot condition in which these toes curl and arch up, which can often lead to pain when wearing footwear.

Symptoms

  • Pain in the affected toes
  • Development of corns or calluses due to friction
  • Inflammation
  • Redness
  • Contracture of the toes

Causes

Genetics – People who are genetically predisposed to hammertoe are often more susceptible

Arthritis – Because arthritis affects the joints in your toes, further deformities stemming from arthritis can occur

Trauma – Direct trauma to the toes could potentially lead to hammertoe

Ill-fitting shoes – Undue pressure on the front of the toes from ill-fitting shoes can potentially lead to the development of hammertoe

Treatment

Orthotics – Custom made inserts can be used to help relieve pressure placed on the toes and therefore relieve some of the pain associated with it

Medications – Oral medications such as anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs could be used to treat the pain and inflammation hammertoes causes. Injections of corticosteroids are also sometimes used

Surgery – In more severe cases where the hammertoes have become more rigid, foot surgery is a potential option

If you have any questions please contact our office located in Havre de Grace, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about What Are Hammertoes?
Monday, 10 December 2018 00:00

Are Broken Toes a Serious Condition?

The bones in the toe are known to be fragile, and may easily break if a foot injury occurs, or if something heavy is dropped on it. A broken toe is serious if the bone is protruding through the skin, which may make an infection likely to occur. There are common symptoms that people may experience if they have broken a toe, including stiffness in the toe and surrounding area, pain, swelling, or bruising that may gradually disappear. If something heavy was dropped on the toe, the nail bed may become bruised as a result of the injury, which will diminish as the nail grows. It may be beneficial to demonstrate care in performing specific daily activities including walking and jogging until the toe is completely healed, which may take up to six weeks. If you have broken your toe, please consult with a podiatrist to learn about correct treatment options.

Broken toes may cause a lot of pain and should be treated as soon as possible. If you have any concerns about your feet, contact Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.

What is a Broken Toe?

A broken toe occurs when one or more of the toe bones of the foot are broken after an injury. Injuries such as stubbing your toe or dropping a heavy object on it may cause a toe fracture.

Symptoms of a Broken Toe

  • Swelling
  • Pain (with/without wearing shoes)
  • Stiffness
  • Nail Injury

Although the injured toe should be monitored daily, it is especially important to have a podiatrist look at your toe if you have severe symptoms. Some of these symptoms include: worsening or new pain that is not relieved with medication, sores, redness, or open wounds near the toe.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Havre de Grace, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about What to Know About a Broken Toe
Monday, 03 December 2018 00:00

Different Types of Muscles in the Feet

The foot is comprised of several bones, ligaments, tendons, and muscles, which provide the mobility that is necessary to perform daily activities. There are two types of muscles that are in the feet, and these are referred to as extrinsic and intrinsic muscles. When the foot is pointed and flexed, the extrinsic muscles are responsible for this type of action. The latter set of muscles are attached to the foot, and these muscles are used to maintain balance, in addition to moving the feet forward. Uncomfortable and painful foot conditions may possibly diminish when these muscles are properly stretched. There are specific stretches that can be performed, which may be beneficial for the overall health of the foot. These may include static stretches in which the toes can be pulled back until a gentle stretch is felt. Additionally, when dynamic stretches are practiced, the natural motion of the foot may be restored. This can be accomplished by rolling the arch of the foot along a tennis ball or a similar object. If you would like additional information about the benefits of stretching the feet, please consult with a podiatrist.

Why Stretching is Important for Your Feet

Stretching the feet is a great way to prevent injuries. If you have any concerns with your feet consult with Dr. Richard Silverstein from Union Foot Care. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

Stretching the Feet

Stretching the muscles in the foot is an important part in any physical activity. Feet that are tight can lead to less flexibility and make you more prone to injury. One of the most common forms of foot pain, plantar fasciitis, can be stretched out to help ease the pain. Stretching can not only ease pain from plantar fasciitis but also prevent it as well. However, it is important to see a podiatrist first to determine if stretching is right for you. Podiatrists can also recommend other ways to stretch your feet. Once you know whether stretching is right for you, here are some excellent stretches you can do.

  • Using a foam roller or any cylindrical object (a water bottle or soda can will do), roll the object under your foot back and forth. You should also exert pressure on the object. Be sure to do this to both feet for a minute. Do this exercise three times each.
  • Similar to the previous exercise, take a ball, such as a tennis ball, and roll it under your foot while seated and exert pressure on it.
  • Grab a resistance band or towel and take a seat. If you are using a towel, fold it length wise. Next put either one between the ball of your foot and heel and pull with both hands on each side towards you. Hold this for 15 seconds and then switch feet. Do this three times for each foot.
  • Finally hold your big toe while crossing one leg over the other. Pull the toe towards you and hold for 15 seconds. Once again do this three times per foot.

It is best to go easy when first stretching your foot and work your way up. If your foot starts hurting, stop exercising to ice and rest the foot. It is advised that you then see a podiatrist for help.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Havre de Grace, MD. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about How to Stretch Your Feet