Crooked toes could happen all the time. This is usually caused by wearing high heels or narrow-toed shoes. By wearing this kind of shoes, the ligaments in your toes and tendons will start to warp. The sight of crooked toes is scary especially when it starts to get painful. Particularly, the big toe can develop a bunion. Learning how to make your toes straight leads you to an imperative knowledge you can use to treat the condition.
There are many non-surgical ways to treat a crooked toe. Of course, this will depend on how severe the toes could get but the treatments introduced here will be helpful enough to fix the early stages of that condition. Another possible option would be visiting your nearest doctor but as long as you believe it will be cured then there’s no harm in trying the following.
- 1 How to straighten crooked toes
- 2 Exercises to make toes straight
- 3 Types of crooked toes
- 4 Signs and causes of crooked toes
- 5 When to visit a foot specialist
- 6 Surgical ways to straighten toes
- 7 Dislocations
- 8 Conclusion
How to straighten crooked toes
These non-surgical ways will help you treat your crooked toes. If you have that crooked toe for quite some time then urgent action is required.
Over the counter medications are great way to ease the pain caused by crooked toes. However, you need to check a physician first if it’s okay to use these medications. Be sure to follow instructions as well to be more cautious about your health. Medications like acetaminophen, naproxen, or ibuprofen are recommended for the pain.
2. Toe supports
Another way to relieve the pain is through toe-supports. This will make you comfortable since it will support the toes. You can try using arch supports, moleskin, toe tubes, or orthotic inserts. There are a lot of toe-support products available nowadays, thus choose the kind that suits your toe best.
3. Change footwear
Changing your footwear will be the best thing you could do for your toes. Majority of people having crooked toes are women who wear narrower shoes and high heels. So to prevent further damage to your toes then you might want to consider changing your footwear. Choose shoes that are spacious for your toes. It is recommended to use the kind of shoes that have ½ inch space from your big toe up to the smaller toe. Also, choose shoes that allow your toes to wiggle while wearing it.
Athletic shoes and sandals are must-haves as well. These will give your toes much space and enough comfort. This will stop pain as well. Further, there are custom-made shoes available nowadays, these will be made according to the size and comfort of your feet.
4. Splint your toes
Get a splint for your toes. To realign the joint around your toes tape a plastic or a metal splint. These will reduce the pain depending on the joint damage but there are arch supports and orthotics that could be a great help also. These arch supports and orthotics will correct the balance and distribute the weight on your toes. Before getting a splint, massage it carefully first and have foot baths.
5. Crooked toes instrument
Toe spacing products are a great help as well. These can be worn inside your shoes to help realign the toes. Moreover, it will also increase the stability of your foot. It will strengthen the muscles and tendons around as well.
6. Realign dislocations
A specialist could realign your toe manually. You can visit a podiatrist or chiropractor to realign your toes. These will prevent further damage to the toes. It will also avoid surgery and straighten the toes.
Exercises to make toes straight
These are the exercises you can do to straighten the toes and to prevent it. Do this exercise 10 minutes a day. Toes need proper care as well and by doing this exercises you can have straight and sore free toes.
1. Toe flexing
Begin by putting your barefoot on the floor and flex it upward one by one. Start on your big toe up to the smaller one, right and left, then repeat it again for the toes to be flexible. This will be a stretching for your toes.
2. Toe pulling
Pull your toes one by one for it to stretch fully. Do this just like how you do it with your hands and there’s a click sound accompanied by it. This exercise will realign your toes. Again, repeatedly do this to avoid crooked toes.
3. Toe picking
Another wonderful exercise for your toes is by picking something on the floor. Do this while you are sitting or standing, then drop a thing that your toes can pick up. By doing this, your toe muscles will strengthen and it will help loosen the joints around your toes. Effectively, it will straighten your toes. Thus, whenever you drop something, have your toes pick it for you.
4. Toe massage
This is a form of exercise for your toes. Hold it one by one then make it move in a circular way. You could also use your fingers and do little massages for the joints and ligaments. Do this daily. After work when you are no longer wearing a shoe.
Types of crooked toes
Nobody wants a crooked toe, its unpleasant sight when you have one. Conveniently, this can be treated by following ways above. Also, to provide further information, there are different kinds of crooked toes that you want to know to help you and how to properly fix it.
Hammertoe is the kind of crooked toe that warps the first toe joint. Your toes will become rigid if it’s not taken care immediately. This looks like a hammer that is why it is called a hammer toe.
To fix a hammer toe. Ditch your heels and use athletic shoes, use splints and supports on your toes and do the toe exercise every day. When it is severe, do the stretching multiple times to straighten your toes. Surgical methods could also be applied when it cannot be fixed through non-surgical ways.
2. Claw toe
Claw toe is the kind of crooked toe that warps not just the first but also the second toe joint. These will create calluses that are painful along the way. When it is taken for granted the toes will deform and could get worse as the time passes.
Fix your claw toe by avoiding small shoes instead use the bigger and the wider ones. This kind of crooked toes can be fixed by surgical methods but when the toe problem is not severe, do the exercises and stretching for your toes. In addition, you could also try walking using your toes, but don’t do this when it is painful.
3. Mallet toe
When your toe is warp at the last toe joint then it is a mallet toe. To fix this mallet toe use that is wider. Habitually, give your toes some exercise. Given methods on how to heal hammer and claw toe can also be used in the mallet toe.
4. Adductovarus toe
This is the crooked toe that already moves under the other toe. It is common to the fourth and last toes. Use open sandals for a while and then consult a podiatrist to help you in this condition.
5. Overlapping toe
Unlike adductovarus toe, this crooked toe already overlaps the other toe. It lies on top of the other toe that may painful and reddish toes. When you have this condition, consult the nearest podiatrist right away.
Signs and causes of crooked toes
1. Signs of crooked toes
Here are the common signs that you have crooked toes. Be watchful of these signs to avoid further damage:
- The sure sign of crooked toes is the pain you're feeling around your toes. This is hard to ignore since it is uncomfortable to walk with these pain
- There will be an obvious inflammation and redness on your toes. When this happens, stop using your narrow shoe for a while and try wearing athletic shoes.
- When your toe starts to irritate while you are wearing a shoe.
- The skin around your toes starts to thicken
- There will be shortening of your toes. It might start to warp and quite painful when you try to straighten it.
2. Causes of crooked toes
- When your shoes are too fit for your feet. Also, those narrow toe shoes and high heels are the major causes of a crooked toe.
- Foot traumas, these are accidents or injury happened to your feet that involves your toe. It could also be intentional like soccer that involves using your foot.
- Genetics could also play a role in your crooked toes. Crooked toes might runs in the family so better be careful.
- Arthritis is a cause for crooked toes too.
When to visit a foot specialist
When the condition of your toes starts to get very alarming then you need to visit a foot doctor. Go immediately when you have one or more crooked toes. Also, do this when you couldn’t take the pain and the inflammation anymore. Further action is required since it will ruin your work or your other activities. A podiatrist will provide you right information since they specialize in foot problems. They will also suggest suitable shoes for you.
A podiatrist will decide whether the toes need surgery or not. Other sources of information could be the physical therapist, chiropractors, and naturopaths.
Correcting your toes can also be provided by an orthopedist, they specialize in joints. And your toes can be corrected using braces, splints or a surgery. These will be a great help since they will prescribe you medications (Painkillers). They will also identify the diagnosis if it’s arthritis or caused by diabetes.
Xrays, bone scan, MRI and diagnostic ultrasound will be done on your crooked toes. Of course, this will cost you but as long as it will not hinder your walks anymore then don’t hesitate and give yourself freedom from crooked toes.
Surgical ways to straighten toes
When the doctor decided that you should undergo a surgery, then be at ease cause this will stop the pain from your crooked toes. By doing the surgery, the doctor can move the tendons to release the tensions from the joint. When the problem is too severe then the doctor will do something about the bones. The doctor will shave or break it in order to set it straight. The doctor will use pins and wires to hold the bone while you are still in the process of healing.
In case of damaged joints, the doctor might need to remove it. But, other options could be done as well. These are fusing the joints and replacing it with artificial ones. After the surgery, it is recommended not to use tight shoes and heels again to prevent having crooked toes again. Take the time to heal and afterward give proper care to your foot to avoid additional problems.
Dislocations are caused by accidents and injuries happened in the past. These are called foot traumas. It is painful and looked misaligned. To treat dislocations you need to consult your podiatrist or chiropractors to straighten your toes. You will undergo a treatment for the injury and for the pain to stop.
Who would have expected that a toe could give you a problem as well? This is just a tiny part of the body but it can still give you a significant pain. You have no choice but to deal with it and while you are experiencing it don’t forget the lesson it will give you along the way. That even the tiniest part of your body needs care and when it comes to health, it should not be taken for granted.
When your toes get straight and healed, it’s important to prevent the causes of crooked toes. Apply the following ways above and don’t forget that a right shoe can prevent you from thousands of problems along the way. Exercise all the time and include your tiny toes. Ditch all the heels in your house and give your feet the freedom from crooked feet.
Now that you know how to make your toes straight, it’s time to apply the knowledge you have learned and incorporate it into your regular lifestyle.