Two Common Small Toe Disorders

In this article we will discuss two of the most common conditions affecting people with small toes. If you find yourself with smaller than normal toes then you may check for signs and symptoms of these conditions. Consult a podiatrist if you notice anything unusual. This could already be a symptom of a foot disorder. Dr. John Schilero is a podiatrist who specializes in helping people toe deformities. 

Claw Toe

This is a condition where your toes bend and form into a claw-like position. Most people blame this condition on constant wearing of close shoes but again, it can also be caused by nerve damage brought by diseases such as diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis.


Signs and symptoms: 

  • The joints at the ball of the foot are bent upward.
  • Middle joints are flexed toward the sole of your shoe.
  • Corns and calluses may develop from rubbing against your shoes.
  • You may or may not experience any pain.



  •  Use your bare hands to return them to their natural position of the toes are still flexible.
  • Exercise your toes. You may use them to pick up objects from the floor.
  •  Do not, or at least avoid, wearing shoes that are too tight for you.
  •  Ask your podiatrist to splint or tape your toes back to their normal positions.
  •  If your claw toe is severe and could not be alleviated by regular procedure, talk with your doctor for a possible surgery.



Hammertoe is aggravated by wearing improper footwear that results in your toe bending downward.

Signs and symptoms: 

  • Pain felt on top of a bent toe when putting on a shoe.
  • Restricted movement and painful toe joint.
  • Corns on top of the toe joint.
  • Pain on the ball of the foot under the bent toe.



  •  Wear a pair of wide toe-box shoes. These are shoes that gives more space for the toes.
  • Wear appropriate shoes for your activity.
  • Use non-medicated hammertoe pads as they help to relieve the pain from pressure.
  • Ice pack application may reduce the pain and swelling.


At Palm Beach Orthopaedic Institute located in West Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and Wellington, we specialize in helping people suffering from toe disorders.  To schedule an appointment, call 561-694-7776 EXT. 2112