Natural ways to correct hammertoes include gently massaging the affected toe, using non-medicated hammertoe or metatarsal pads, splinting the toe in the early stages of the condition, and icing the affected toe to reduce inflammation, according to WebMD. Patients can also get a custom-made shoe insert from an orthotist.
People with hammertoe have a bend in the middle joint of the affected toe, usually the toe next to the big toe. Hammertoe occurs most often in women who wear narrow shoes with high heels because this style shoe bends the toes at an unnatural angle, according to Mayo Clinic. People can also develop hammertoe after trauma or nerve damage to the toe. Some people with hammertoe require surgery to relieve the pain associated with the condition.
People with diabetes or other conditions that cause poor circulation in the toes are more susceptible to developing hammertoe, advises WebMD. People need to check their feet daily for developing problems and wear good shoes. Most people have different size feet and should purchase shoes in the size that fits the larger foot. Properly fitting shoes allow one-half inch between the tip of the longest toe and the end of the shoe. Shoes should be high and broad across the toes, and heels should be 2 inches or lower.