The most suitable type of hammertoe correction for your condition depends on whether your toe is still flexible or not. In the early stages, your toe may develop calluses and be painful, but the joint is still able to move, so you can straighten out your toe. As the damage progresses, the joint eventually becomes stiff, and stays in a bent position. Then the only treatment that works is surgery. That's why you don't want to ignore your symptoms. Here are some of the treatments you can try while you're still in the early stages.
Change Your Footwear
Choose footwear that gives your toes plenty of room inside. There should be no pressure on your toes at all. Choose shoes that are a little longer and wider than your feet, so you can walk comfortably without rubbing. Shoes with a wide toe usually work best. The heel height is important, too. Avoid high heels because these force pressure onto your toes. Sandals are a good option as long as they provide good arch support. Flat sandals, like flip-flops, can lead to other foot problems if you wear them too often, because they do not support your arch.
Try An Orthotic Device
You can buy shoe inserts at your drugstore, or you can go to a podiatrist for help in choosing the best kind. If you buy them at the store, be sure the label says the insert is for hammertoe correction. There are many different orthotic devices you can buy, and you want one that separates and stabilizes your toes with cushions or straps. You can even buy devices you wear like socks, so they'll stay on when you take your shoes off. If you wear the proper device for an extended period of time, your toes may gradually go back into alignment, especially if you do toe exercises, too. You may also want to buy corn pads to wear as cushioning on your joints and callouses if they are tender.
Do Toe Exercises
Your condition might be caused by wearing shoes that don't fit well. This is especially true if you are fond of wearing high heels. However, there could be other causes, too. One thing that causes your toe to turn at an angle is problems with the muscles. If the muscles on one side are stronger, they draw the toe to one side. Toe exercises may be helpful. Your podiatrist will explain the best ones to do. Some simple ones you can try are picking up a towel with your toes, walking on your tiptoes, and toe stretches.
These home treatments may be able to stop the progression of your condition. However, if you get to the point that pain interferes with your life, then it may be time to talk to your podiatrist like the one at http://www.footfirstpodiatrycl.com about having surgery to straighten out your toe.