How to Find the Right Treatment for Your Hammer Toes

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How to Find the Right Treatment for Your Hammer Toes

In the United States, an estimated 7 million people suffer from a condition called hammer toe. If you are suffering from this problem, you may be wondering how you can correct it. It’s worth exploring hammer toe treatment options, as it can bring long-term relief to the issue.

You don’t have to give over control of your life to reverse the effects of this disorder. There is a solution out there for you ranging from something simple like getting a new pair of shoes, to surgery.

Let’s explore the causes of hammer toe as well as find the right treatment options for you.

What is Hammer Toe?

If you want to understand hammer toe treatment options, it helps to understand how this disorder occurs in the first place. When the deformity develops it happens in the second, third, or fourth toe on either foot.

The toe ends up bending around the middle joint and gains an awkward curvature. The name “hammer toe” comes from the shape the toe takes on after the curve worsens.


This foot deformity can happen due to a number of circumstances. To understand what kind of treatment method you need it is crucial that you think about how your hammer toe occurred.

Some of the leading causes include:

  • A serious foot injury
  • Wearing shoes that do not fit
  • Constant tension in foot muscles
  • Bunions
  • An arching foot

Hammer Toe Treatment Options

Aside from how your hammer toe occurred, you should also consider the severity of the bend. Treatment will depend on how bad the issue had progressed.

In mild cases, the curvature of the toe can get corrected through simple foot exercises such as picking up small marbles with the toes and changing shoe types. Your best bet is to look for shoes that have plenty of room in the front.

The extra room will allow you to exercise your toes in your shoe and help straighten your toes back out. It is recommended that you shoe inserts to help reduce pain and inflammation during the healing process.

Serious Cases

In serious cases of hammer toe, surgery is the most logical answer. There’s a variety of different surgery types for people looking for a solution to their physical ailment.

One such surgery is an Arthroplasty. This procedure involves removing about half of the joint from the toe so that it can get repositioned and go back to its normal spot.

Some people seek surgery as an option if they are unable to handle the pain that comes with hammer toe. On the other hand, others opt for surgery if they are self-conscious about the appearance of their feet.

Regardless of the reason, surgery is a viable treatment option for those who have severe hammer toe.

What’s Next?

Are you currently suffering from hammer toe and don’t know what to do next? Don’t worry; you’re not alone.

Contact us today so we can help assess your situation. We offer a variety of solutions no matter how the issue started or how severe it has become.

6 Must-Know Tips to Help Prevent Ingrown Toenails

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6 Must-Know Tips to Help Prevent Ingrown Toenails

Few pains in this world beat the pain of an ingrown toenail. The condition sends something of a sting through your entire body, and can be almost unbearable to live with.

While some people are prone to ingrown toenails, others only experience them on rare occasions. Whichever group you fall into, there are things which can be done to prevent ingrown toenails in the future.

Here are 6 must-know tips to help you prevent ingrown toenails.

1. Trim Your Nails

The best way to prevent the existence of ingrown toenails is to trim your toenails right in the first place.

Many people, when trimming their nails, tend to trim them down to the skin. This is improper. What you need to do is leave a bit of nail off of the skin, all the while trimming in a straight line.

Doing this will prevent skin from growing up over your nails.

2. Wear Comfortable Footwear

Wearing comfortable footwear is necessary for a number of reasons, one of which is to prevent nasty ingrown toenails.

Shoes which are too tight either in the front or on the sides tend to crowd your toes together. Because they have no room to move, they are constantly making contact with the shoes themselves.

This constant collision will put stress on the nails, causing them to grow in unpredictable ways.

3. Soak Your Feet

A great way to cease the growth of ingrown toenails, and to keep your feet healthy in general is by soaking them on a regular basis. Soaking your feet will keep both your skin and your nails soft, allowing them to grow in a satisfactory manner.

The best way to soak your feet is with warm water and perhaps a bit of Epsom salt. Essential oils can also help to soothe and moisturize your skin.

4. Prioritize Foot Freedom

Because your shoes tend to put a lot of stress on your toenails, you should do without them as much as possible. The less you wear shoes, the less chance you have of developing ingrown toenails.

When you’re lounging around the house, opt for either bare feet or socks.

5. Don’t Pick at Your Cuticles

If you’ve developed a nasty habit of picking and tearing at your cuticles are toenails, you’ve got to try and stop as soon as possible.

When you pick your nails and cuticles, you make them misshapen. Misshapen nails will grow in most of the time, causing ingrown toenails on occasion.

6. Consult a Podiatrist

If you’ve tried everything but are still having trouble with ingrown toenails, it’s time to consult a podiatrist. A podiatrist will be able to assess your specific case and assist you in a way that best benefits you.

In some cases, podiatrists can perform ingrown toenail surgery. This is a quick surgery which will have you pain-free in close to no time.

We Can Help to Prevent Ingrown Toenails

If you’ve got chronic trouble with ingrown toenails, it might be time to talk to a podiatrist. Do you live in the San Dimas, California area? We here at Pacific Foot & Ankle Associates are the podiatrists you’re looking for.

With years of experience on our side, we know exactly must be done to prevent ingrown toenails from occurring.

Contact us to schedule an appointment today!

Ingrown Toenail Surgery- What to Expect

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Ingrown Toenail Surgery Explained- What to Expect

Having an ingrown toenail is extremely painful, and most people try to handle it themselves. However, constantly digging at your toenail at home can do additional harm.

You may think that ingrown toenail surgery is unusual, but it’s actually a common procedure. If a nail will not respond to the usual treatment, surgical treatment is recommended.

If your doctor has told you that you need surgery on your ingrown toenail, you may be nervous. It helps to understand why surgery is prescribed and what you can expect.

Why Ingrown Toenail Surgery?

An ingrown toenail is a common painful condition. Generally, it occurs on the big toe. The nail grows into your skin instead of growing outward normally. Ingrown toenails are one of a number of common foot problems.

Ingrown toenails generally occur as a result of improper shoes or toe injuries. It may also occur due to genetic conditions, aggressive pedicures, or split nails. Traditional treatments for ingrown toenails include foot soaks, nail trimming, and good foot hygiene.

Unfortunately, ingrown toenails often come back again and again. There’s a risk of infection as well. These risks lead many doctors to recommend toenail surgery to correct the problem permanently.

You Won’t Need Anesthesia

Most ingrown toenail surgery is a quick procedure done at a podiatrist’s office. You will not be put under general anesthesia. Instead, you will be given an injection that will numb your toe.

The injection will sting and burn for a few seconds, but after that, there is no pain. A rubber band tourniquet is applied to the base of the toe to reduce bleeding during the surgery. The fact that you won’t be knocked out for a major surgical procedure is a significant relief to most patients.

A Section of Toenail Will Be Cut Away

Rather than cutting only the edge of the nail, a podiatrist will cut a larger section of the toenail away. Only the side near the site of the ingrown nail is affected.

A deep cut is made, and forceps are used to pull away the nail. This exposes the skin below the nail, or the nail bed, in that area.

Once the nail is cut away, the doctor will use cotton swabs to clean the area. The cleaning solution will repeatedly be applied for several minutes to clean the site of the surgery completely. Afterward, a bandage will be wrapped around your toe.

You Can Walk Right After Surgery

If you’re concerned about having trouble walking, you don’t need to worry. After bandaging, you will still be able to wear shoes and walk normally. You can remove the bandage after two days.

You will have to wash the surgical area every day, and you may be given antibiotic ointment to prevent infections. You may have minor throbbing or pain after the anesthetic wears off, but the discomfort is minimal.

The solution is permanent. Ingrown toenail surgery is a common, well-proven procedure that can end your ingrown nail issues for good. If you’re interested in learning more about common foot problems, and how you can handle them, Call our office +1-626-385-3338 – or – click here to request an appointment!

Bunion Surgery: 5 Most Common Questions

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5 Most Common Questions About Bunion Surgery

Bunion surgery is typically a surgical procedure to correct a deformity near the big toe on your foot. This procedure is usually recommended when other treatment options fail to relieve the symptoms of a bunion.

Before undergoing this procedure, it helps to learn more as possible to ensure it’s the right treatment for you.

In this post, we’re are going to share some of the common questions about the surgery.

1. Do I Need the Surgery?

In most cases, if the bunion is not painful, then surgery is not necessary. Even though sometimes bunions increase in size, doctors don’t recommend surgery as the first treatment option.

Instead, wearing protective shoes is the ideal measure to slow the progression of a bunion’s size. Keep in mind that the surgery should not be performed for cosmetic reasons. Sometimes there can be an ongoing pain even when there’s no bunion.

2. What Kind of Preparation is Needed?

Before the bunion surgery, you may need to undergo several tests to check your overall health. Some tests may include a  cardiogram to check your heart’s function, X-rays to assess your lungs, and blood and urine tests to see if you have any underlying conditions.

If you’re taking medications, such as aspirin or other blood thinners, you’ll need to stop taking them a few days before surgery.

3. Are There Different Surgical Procedures for Bunions?

It’s helpful for your doctor to explain the different bunion surgery options you have. This helps in recommending the right procedure for you. Typically, there are three common surgery techniques:

Bone cutting

Podiatrists use this method to cut the deviated bones. It also changes the bone shape to ensure a correct position.

Bone fusion

In this procedure, the doctor joins the non-essential joints to realign the entire bone of the foot and remedy the deviation.

Bunion shaving

This is recommended for small bunions, and it involves removing excess bone from the inside of the bone. Ligament repair is also necessary here to ensure proper to alignment.

4. What Is the Expected Recovery Period?

Generally, it depends on your bunion size and the type of surgery selected for you. For most patients, this takes about six to eight weeks for the bones to mend after the procedure.

Most patients usually resume their normal routine and activities three months after the surgery.

It’s not recommended to drive until the surgery heals, especially if you’re using restrive devices such as casts and boots.

5. What Is the Cost?

The charge for bunion surgery depends on the size of your bunion and type of procedure. In general, you can expect a cost range of $3,000 to $5,000. Your doctor will provide more information on the cost during your initial visit.

Since the surgery is a medical procedure, most insurance plans usually cover it. However, if the purpose of the surgery is to improve the foot’s appearance, then this may not be covered. Your insurer and doctor will help you understand your options.

Bunion Surgery – The Bottom Line

The surgical approach for bunions varies depending on the severity of the condition. As a patient, you should only consider this treatment if taking anti-inflammatory medication, using toe splints, and wearing wider shoes fail to relieve your bunion.

Also, don’t wait too long as going without treatment can lead to other foot problems and deformities. If you have any questions, call our office or if you would like to request an appointment


Hammertoe Surgery: How to Recover Quickly

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Hammertoe Correction: What to Expect After Surgery

Hammertoe can only be treated with extra padding or special shoes for so long.

Eventually, many people with curled toes consider hammertoe surgery for permanent pain relief.

Nobody wants to have surgery. But it’s often the best way to get back to wearing your favorite shoes and living your life.

If you’re considering hammertoe surgery, you’re not alone.

Here’s a quick guide to recovery and what to expect after the operation:

How Long Does Recovery Take?

The length of your recovery is dependent on the type of procedure you have and your personal circumstances.

You may start feeling better after a few days. Full healing may take between 2 and 6 weeks.

How Can I Aid Recovery?

You can’t speed up the recovery process. But you can make it easier.

Swelling is common after surgery. 

Try the RICE method to combat inflammation.

RICE stands for rest, ice, compression and elevation.

You’ll also have a bandage on your foot as well as stitches. Avoid getting the bandage wet and do your best to keep it clean.

Finally, you may be given a prescription for pain medication. If not, you can take acetaminophen, ibuprofen or naproxen.

Be sure to take these as directed – NEVER take a higher dosage than recommended by the manufacturer.

Will I Be Able to Walk?

It’s also helpful to limit the movement you need to do. Get up and walk around. Go to the bathroom. But don’t go too far until 2 to 3 days after your surgery.

Get up and walk around. Go to the bathroom. But don’t go too far until 2 to 3 days after your surgery.

Generally, you shouldn’t put weight on your foot for a few days. And only do so if it doesn’t cause pain.

In some cases, you’ll be given crutches or a cane to help you get around for a few days up to a few weeks. The length of time depends on the surgery you have, the number of toes operated on, and the healing process.

You’ll also be given a special shoe for the healing foot to increase mobility and support healing.

Are There Complications?

Complications related to hammertoe surgery are similar to other operations. Infection, bleeding, and damage to blood vessels are nerves are all potential complications.

If you are given general anesthesia, you also assume those risks.

Issues related to the specific surgery are rare. But there is a chance your toe will feel unstable because the procedure requires cutting the ligaments.

There is also a slight likelihood the hammertoe will come back.

Finally, if the surgeon fuses the bone in the toe back together, there is a small chance the bone might not heal.

When Should I Call a Doctor After Hammertoe Surgery?

Here are a few good reasons to ring your doctor after surgery:

  • If the wound is bleeding or there’s drainage
  • If the swelling increases after a few days
  • If pain medication isn’t helping
  • If you have a fever

Hammertoe is a painful problem with a straightforward solution. If you’re ready to straighten your toes and live pain-free, contact us today.