Arthritis is a health condition that affects the joints, knees, and hips. It can also occur in almost any part of the body where there are joints, such as the toes.

There are a number of different types of arthritis that can lead to pain in the toes. Let’s read on to learn what toe arthritis is, its causes, and how it can be treated.


What is Toe Arthritis and What Causes It?

Arthritis that affects the toes is caused by an inflammation that occurs in the joints of the toes. This condition most notably harms the big toe, but other toes might be involved as well.

There are several reasons that can cause toe arthritis, such as previous traumas or injuries, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout.

Women that enjoy wearing tight, high-heeled shoes are also at risk of developing toe arthritis.


The Symptoms of Arthritis in Toes

Typically, the symptoms of toe arthritis result in chronic inflammation surrounding the small joints in this area. The following are the most prevalent conditions that one can expect.


Toe Pain

The most tell-tale sign of arthritis in the toes is pain. Usually, this pain gets worse when a person starts to become more active or carries heavy weight, and can be relieved by resting. It can take hours, or sometimes days, for the pain to subscribe when it gets exacerbated due to activity.



A person that experiences swelling around the joints of their toes, with a feeling of fullness and difficulty when bending, may have toe arthritis.


Restricted Movement

The range of motion of toe joints with arthritis can become severely limited due to the swelling and damage caused by the disease.


How Can Toe Arthritis Be Treated?

When treating arthritis in the toes, the standard approach would be to start with simple steps. People don’t often jump to get invasive treatments right away, as doctors will also have to assess their condition before doing so.


Footwear Changes

Doctors often recommend people with toe arthritis to try making changes to their footwear. Changing the shoes that are usually worn to something that is more comfortable may release pressure off the toe joints and relieve stress.


Ice and Heat Application

Applying ice can benefit toe joints that are inflamed and ease the symptoms of arthritis in this location. Putting heat packs or hot towels is also an alternative for those that do not prefer cold toes.


Anti-Inflammatory Medications

Oral anti-inflammatory drugs may be prescribed by doctors to help relieve swelling and discomfort that comes with toe arthritis.


Cortisone Injection

Injecting cortisone is simply applying anti-inflammatory medications directly at the area of the inflammation. Doctors can inject the cortisone straight to the site to cause rapid relief from pain.


Why Trust The Foot Pod?

At The Foot Pod, we have an experienced doctor that can help provide you with the right solution for arthritis in your toes. Dr. Rachel Timmins is our principal podiatrist and has been operating the clinic since 2008.

Contact us at (08) 9246 7292 or send Dr. Rachel an email directly at drtimmins@thefootpod.com.au. See you and your feet soon!