Both second toes bent at tips. How to straighten them?

Posted , 13 users are following.

Hi there

Ok so I am a 32 year old guy and for as long as I have known both my second toes have bent towards the third toes at a 45 degree angle. This only happens at the end joint at the toe tips. The toes are still flexible andthis is not hammer toe, mallet toe or anything else I can find online. I seem to be unique. The toes do not arch or curve up only bend sideways at the toe tips. 

This is causing me massive psychological issues. I have suffered from anxiety and depression for many years and the last couple I have really tried hard to overcome these issues. I have lost a lot of weight and feel better about myself but my toes are one of the last things that I still hate about myself. They just look very weird and ensure that I cant wear open toe shoes in the summer. 

I have seen three chiropodists/podiatrists and two doctors and all of them have basically just shrugged and told me their is not much to do, I think this is because the toes do not cause me any physical pain or discomfort however they are slowly getting worse and I can forsee problems down the line. 

Please any advice would be very useful. I have asked the chiropodists is taping the toes straight could slowly (I am aware it could take months/years) straighten them into place but dont get much of a reply. 

Thank you

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  • Posted

    You get your chiropodist/podiotrist to suggest surgery to straighten them.

    I went to see one myself recently for different but similar problems in my feet that were making it hard for me to find shoes that fit.

    But I am twice your age and for me it didn't make sense to put myself out of action for so long. It might well for you, not so much for cosmetic reasons but because in the long term it could affect your walking. It also might not, so don't get alarmed. The chiropodist should be able to advise you on that.

    The problem is surgery is painful and delibitating and could take you off your feet for a while. They'll most likely suggest you do it one at a time, to keep you mobile and on a walker and stick, and you'll have to go through that experience twice. There's also likely to be a very long waiting list on the NHS for something like this, if they'll do it at all.

    So how important is it in itself really, when the issues are probably more to do with your depessive tendencies? When we are depressed everything seems wrong and however much we try to make it right on the outside, life still seems to bear a sting.

    The long-term life-changing answer is to look to the inside. Change not our eating habits or our lifestyle choices or our toes, but ourselves.

    So the alternative to surgery would be to live with it. Accept you have 'funny' toes (most people have 'funny' something and feel as self conscious as you do about them) and try a totally different route - meditation!

    That'll seem weird on first viewing but if you entered deeply into meditation, it's not just your toe probem that will go out the window.... all probelems will go out the window.

    A ten-in-one whammy!

     

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  • Posted

    I can't offer much reassurance or advice, but you're not alone - I also have this condition, I'm guessing it's probably genetic. Dealing with this is learning to love who your are not really not give a damn about wht other people think - I doubt most people would even notice. For example, when one first meets a stranger, the first thing they do is make eye contact, and stay focused on their face, whilst talking to them, very rarely would someone look at your feet (unless they have a fetish or something smile ). I also have chronic psoriasis, and used to be really self concious about baring my skin in public, to the point of not going to the gym, and not wearing short sleeved shirts, even in boiling hot weather - eventually I got to the point of saying "Sod it, this is how I am, no one's perfect. if people have a problem, that's their problem, not mine". Be kind to yourself and don't dwell on negatives!
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  • Posted

    I and my mother have the same condition, the second toe curls toward the third at the tip.  It has never bothered her, but a few decades ago, my right toe became painful when I walked.  Two podiatrists advised me surgery was a mistake, and unlikely to solve the problem.  The third doctor had no objections, and removed the joint between the last and middle knuckle, which then fused.  This took six months to heal fully, but I was walking without crutches after a few weeks.

    Now, after a few decades, my left toe has become a problem as well.  This time the first doctor I saw immediately recommended surgery, but it will be a bit more involved, since the curve increased over time.  Nevertheless, not only walking, but even any pressure and not having my foot perfectly flat has become painful.  Now that I am more than twice the age I was at the first surgery, I expect recovery will be worse.  Surgery is scheduled for the morning as I post this.

    My advice is, if the toes are at all painful physically, act as soon as possible.  They will definitely not get better over time.  Psychologically, this was never an issue for me.  Quite the opposite, a good topic of conversation for a second date.  Whether to fix a cosmetic problem for personal reasons is between you and your professional counselor.  

    Best of luck. 

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  • Posted

    I hear you. Same problem and it bothered me psychologically as a teen for sure. I've also never been able to wear flip flops. Physically it's only caused issues running 20+ miles on trails. Both nails turned black after the race and fell off. Back to normal now. I wouldn't mind a solution. If I return to Trail running then I'll need a fix.

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  • Posted

    Hello did you ever get this fixed???

    I think I have something similar or the same. Left foot third toe top tip joint is very loose bending sideways toward 4th toe. I can straighten it completely by hand but when I walk and put pressure it goes back sideways, it is very painful especially after strenuous activity. Also very embarrassing as I am in mid thirties.

    I don't know if my ortho doc could give it a name he just classified it as mallet toe. I will be getting my already postponed surgery in 12 days. I will have the wire installed and not sure if they will shorten the bone and/or repair the tendon.

    Hope all is well with your situation

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    • Posted

      Hi Jenna

      No I am still in the same situation but I do have have a doctors appointment to see if I can get anything done on the NHS as I am starting to get a lot of cramping and some pain now. An operation is my only hope but as a self employed window cleaner with two young children being out of work for however long is not really a great option. So I am between a rock and a hard place right now. 

      Its good that you are finally getting your op, I hope all goes well. Its nice (in a horrible way) to hear from others that have the same sort of thing. Thought I was all alone lol.

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    • Posted

      Same here, ive been a big fan of socks since this happened.

      Just got my op 2 days ago.

      They removed the top joint on my toe and installed the k wire for 6 weeks. Not as painful as I expected-- feels just like a broken toe, although everyone's pain tolerance is different. I also had hardware removed from other ankle at the same time so its a bit interesting, getting around lol.

      I think it will be a lot better after this is all healed up.

      My surgeon specializes in ankle and foot problems which is bonus b/c they seem to care more about doing a good job in my experience so far.

      Hope you get your fixed up soon its a hard pain to go thru day after day.

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  • Posted

    you could try toe spacers (Correct Toes In-shoe Toe Spacers) and barefoot shoes, normal shoes created this problem so maybe shoes that are actually correct for feet might help you. dont worry tho, many people have this problem and they are only toes,no one will notice
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  • Posted

    Hi there,

    if you can straighten the toes when you touch them, the issue is muscular. The experts shrug their shoulders because it's not yet a serious issue,  It could be caused by an number of reasons - the way you stand, knee / hip issues, shoes etc. But because it is muscular you can help yourself. You can gently pull / stretch the toes for a count of 15, massage with fingers around the webbing. Scrunch the toes and then flex.  Track the tight tendons and gently massage out the tightness.  Match the bad toes to the good toes on the other foot.  Do this everyday, little and often.  It may take a few weeks to see the difference - but it took years to develop - so that's fair enough.  Its good that you've taken back control of your body, and now zoning in on the detail... It's something that we should all be doing.  Best.

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  • Posted

    Hi..I too have the exact same thing..I used to find my special toes kind of cool as a child..now I'm an adult I hate them..apparently one in twelve people have this condition I just can't for the life of me remember what it's called..I saw it on embarrassing bodies a few years ago..I sometimes get pain in the bend of both toes and the doctor said I could have them broken and straightened but the only problem with that is they'd be much longer than the rest of my toes making a new embarrassing problem so I've decided to embrace my weird toes..my son was born the same but his aren't as bent as mine.

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  • Posted

    My toes are exactly the same way as yours are.  I love to go barefoot and to wear sandals but I am self-conscious of my 2nd toes.  I feel everyone is looking at them.  So, I would love to get something which straightens my toes.  Would you care to see a pic of my toes?
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    • Posted

      I meant to say in my text above that maybe we could all post pics of our feet so we can compare our crooked toes and see if we all have the same malady.  I'd be happy to show mine and would hope you all would too. Does anyone know how to post pics on here?

      I do know that I wear pantyhose a lot because they tend to hide my crooked toes, especially if they have reinforced toes.  I do go totally barefoot a good bit also.

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    • Posted

      I will be glad to trade pics with anyone who wants to compare toes on here.  Or I can just send pics of mine if you prefer that.  Just let me know on here.  Thanks.
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