Toe deformities are quite common in kids. In most cases they are present at birth and often seen in one of the child’s parents. They sometimes get worse over time and it is rare that a child will outgrow these conditions. There are several types of curled toes that we see in kids. These include under-lapping toes, overlapping toes, flexed or contracted toes and mallet toes.

Toe malformation in infancy and early childhood is usually not painful and causes the child little if any problem. We usually see these kids because the parents are worried about the appearance of the toes. In most cases there is little to do about the curled toes at this state, but if you are in the Seattle area make an appointment to see us for a complete evaluation of your child’s feet. We are specialists in children’s foot conditions and can give you the best information to help your child.

As your child grows, curled toes can become more of a problem. The deformity, which usually starts off as flexible, can become rigid in nature. As this occurs your child may start to experience pain from the curled toes. If this occurs, we have a number of conservative treatments that can help your child feel better, although there are no conservative treatments that will permanently straighten the toes. Conservative treatments may include stretching exercises, splinting, shoe changes, padding and orthotics.

Is Surgery Ever Necessary?

We consider surgery only as a last resort, but if all conservative treatment has failed and your child is still having pain, then surgery is usually very successful at straightening the toes and eliminating pain. Again, however, surgery should only be considered as a last resort. If surgery has been recommended to you, see us for a second opinion before proceeding.

Let Us Evaluate Your Child’s Toes

If your child has overlapping toes, under-lapping toes, mallet toes or any other form of curled toes, make an appointment today for them to be evaluated in our Seattle foot clinic. We specialize in children’s foot problems and will provide you with the information you need to make the best decision for your child’s foot health.

2023 Shoe Guide and Recommendations

Shoes recommended by our doctors - subscribe now

for shoe list and weekly foot health newsletter


Thank you! 

Check your email for your shoe guide 

You will also receive our weekly shoe recommendations and foot health newsletter. You can unsubscribe at any time.