Indicators You Could Have A Hammer Toe

You might not frequently think about the health of your feet, but it's good to monitor them for any issues that could be apparent. You don't have to endure foot challenges on your own. As soon as you notice that something doesn't seem right, you can contact a local podiatrist to have them assess the issue and discuss treatment options with you. One common toe condition is called hammer toe, and it's fairly easy for the average person to notice by watching for a few prevalent symptoms. Here are three indicators that you could have a hammer toe.

Bent Toe

One of the easiest ways to notice that something is amiss with one of your toes is that it doesn't lie flat like your other toes. Instead, it will be bent to some degree. This results in the knuckle of the toe noticeably sticking up above the other knuckles on the foot. Often, people have one hammer toe on their foot, which makes the issue apparent because one toe is visibly bent and the others are all straight. If you notice this indicator, you'll want to get in touch with a local podiatrist.


A hammer toe may not always show signs of swelling, but swelling can often occur if the condition is particularly advanced. When you look at your toes, try to assess their appearance versus their counterparts on the other foot. For example, if you suspect that you might have a hammer toe in the second toe on your left foot, compare its appearance to the second toe on your right foot. Doing so may reveal that the toe on the left foot is thicker and perhaps even red — two indicators that swelling is present.


It's common to experience some degree of discomfort when you have a hammer toe. You'll often notice this pain when you're standing and walking. Often, you'll change your gait or standing mechanics to compensate for the pain. For example, you might shift your weight to the opposite foot when you have to stand for a prolonged period, or you might alter your gait so that your sore toe isn't touching the ground with as much force as the other toes. Your discomfort can slowly increase throughout the day, leaving you with considerable pain in the evening. If you're aware of one or more of these indicators of a hammer toe, reach out to a podiatry clinic.