It may be small, but your pinky toe will certainly let you know when it hurts.
And if it does hurt, why might that be?
There’s four potential things that could be going on:
1. You Broke It
Your pinky toe frequently makes pain out to be much more intense than the real problem causing it.
For example, it can feel broken when it’s really not.
That doesn’t mean your pinky toe is just fine. But it does mean your pinky isn’t necessarily reporting the truth all the time.
You could have an acute fracture or stress fracture instead, for example.
If your pinky toe has intense pain for more than a day or two that also doesn’t seem to subside, it makes sense to have your podiatrist do an x-ray to get to the truth of the matter.
Simply ignoring the pain and letting your pinky toe do its own thing can have disastrous consequences, such as premature arthritis, chronic pain, or permanent deformity.
Sprains are when ligaments in your pinky toe get stretched too far.
Grade I sprains hurt only a little. They don’t need treatment from a podiatrist and can heal on their own.
Grade II and III sprains, however, hurt noticeably and can hurt so intensely you can’t put any weight on your pinky toe at all.
You may need a walking boot to recover. And in some cases, you may even need surgery.
3. Corns and Calluses
Corns form when your shoes are too tight. And they can be quite painful.
Calluses happen when your foot rubs against your shoe too much.
Fortunately, treatment is simple and usually involves wearing the right-size shoes for your feet.
Orthotics, which improve how your foot fits your shoe, may also be a solution.
While most bunions affect your big toe, they can sometimes affect your pinky toe too.
Bunions are caused by genetically inherited foot abnormalities, by shoes with a narrow toe, or high-heels.
Just like corns and calluses, making sure your shoes fit your feet as they should and/or using orthotics is likely the solution to your bunions.
So if your pinky toe hurts, that could be why.
And now you know why it’s important to not ignore the pain and instead find the right solution to the pain you’re experiencing.