To get the most effective foot care it is best to address crooked toe conditions before they become painful. While often having crooked toes is simply an embarrassing annoyance, ignoring the deformities can lead to arthritis, painful swollen joints, further stiffening of the toe, and can even affect an individual's balance or the way they walk. Also, many people have the wrong habit of cutting their cuticles, which can increase the risk of infections and nail problems. Instead, take care of your cuticles by applying cuticle oil. This will make the cuticles soft and supple. Applying Vaseline can also help to soften the nails, making it easier to trim them. Hammer toes can be caused by shoes that do not fit properly. Ill fitting shoes can force the toe into a bent position, like wearing high heeled shoes or narrow fitting shoes. With the toe bent for a long time this can cause the muscle to shorten resulting in the hammer toe deformity. This is often found in conjunction with bunions or other foot problems. The most common cause of hammer toes is a muscle or tendon imbalance. Hammer toes can also be caused by nerve or joint damage, resulting from conditions like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and diabetes. The development generally types due to the actual imbalance from the bone fragments from the ball of the foot or even once the big toe or hallux needs in order to inclination within an abnormal placement. This particular impacts the way the feet propagates it's load-bearing capability in between the bottom of the actual feet and also the feet. This could affect a person's stability as well as balance. Nail fungus is the most common cause of discolored, thick, and deformed toenails. Here are my grandmother Tips and Tricks that will help you prevent ugly fungi nails and will help you keep your nails looking clean and healthy. read more YogaToes are gelatinous toe separators made by Yoga Pro. They are advertised to ease the pain of hammertoes as well as aid in a number of other foot woes, according to the manufacturer's website. Recommended usage is to wear them daily, starting with 10 minutes per day and working up to longer periods. The product is designed to stretch the toes and move them away from the balls of the feet and from each other. The website claims the device makes toes stronger and more flexible over time. Results From Use of Yoga Toes Hammer toe is a deformity of the toe, in which one or both joints bend abnormally into a "C" shape. Hammer toe can develop in any of the lesser toes, but most often affects the second toe, according to the Merck Manuals. Hammer toes can become painful over time, as the joints lose flexibility. It is also possible for a corn to develop over the prominent joint. When a hammer toe becomes problematic, surgery can be performed to remove part of the bone and release the contracted tendon. Pain and Swelling At the doctor's office he'll do what you can do at home. He'll charge you a good little bit of money then drill a hole in your fingernail or toenail. That's it! The pressure is suddenly released through the new hole in the nail and can ooze out everything from blood to pus. The infection has a way to be released, though, so the pain is suddenly - for the most part - gone. Well, it's at least diminished! To resolve all of your foot and ankle problems, simply look around this site and make an appointment with Dr. Silverberg today. Your feet will be glad you did! Issues such as a family propensity for developing hammertoes or having arthritis or a neuromuscular disease are things over which we have no control. However, the major factors in hammertoe development are matters that we can control, and preventing recurrence of hammertoes likely means changing your behavior. Seek out shoes that conform to the shape of your feet as much as possible and provide plenty of room in the toe box, ensuring that your toes are not pinched or squeezed. Avoid high heels, which shift all your body weight onto your toes, increasing the pressure on your toes and their joints tremendously. Most hammertoes are caused by wearing ill-fitting, tight or high-heeled shoes over a long period of time. Shoes that don’t fit well can crowd the toes, putting pressure on the toes and causing them to curl downward. The condition may be more common when the second toe is longer than the big toe or when the arch of the foot is flat, but it can happen to any toe. The toe becomes unnaturally bent at the first joint. This can become quite painful and gradually it might result in other problems like corns and even bursitis. These exercises can help make your toes less painful throughout the day, and can be done anytime you are in bare feet. If your hammer toes are bothering you, you may find relief in giving them a good stretching, straightening exercise. My advise it to try the 1st or 2nd exercises first as they are easiest. Just remember not to over-do it! Lillian Schwartz, a stroke survivor in Boca Raton, Fla., uses foam toe separators. Available at beauty supply stores for just a few cents, the separators are used by beauticians when giving pedicures. Schwartz recommends using two separators (one on top of the other) if your toes are long. Hammertoes are often aggravated by shoes that don´t fit properly – for example, shoes that crowd the toes. And in some cases, ill-fitting shoes can actually cause the contracture that defines hammertoe. For example, a hammertoe may develop if a toe is too long and is forced into a cramped position when a tight shoe is worn. There are a variety of treatment options for hammertoe. The treatment your foot and ankle surgeon selects will depend upon the severity of your hammertoe and other factors. Genetic- People with flat feet usually have a tendency to develop hammer toes, even though those with high-arched feet can also get the condition.