One of the most common problems people experience as they age is bunions, which can gradually occur over time. The bump on the side of the big toe can become more severe, causing pain and discomfort if left untreated.
This blog will discuss bunion pain, how it can be treated, what you can do to prevent it from worsening, and whether or not surgery is right for you.
The Symptoms of Bunions
People who experience a bunion on their foot will often feel pain. These symptoms can include pain, redness, soreness, burning sensations and numbness.
Bunions are one of the most commonly neglected foot conditions. One of the most common signs of a bunion is a large bump or bulge on the outside. If you’re experiencing redness, swelling, and thickened skin on or near your joint, it might be time for a bunions evaluation. Additionally, persistent pain in the area can indicate surgery is necessary.
Treatment options for a bunion
Bunion treatment depends on how severe the condition is, but our podiatrists will work with you to develop a plan so that you can continue with your activities. Treatment could include orthotics to cushion your foot, compression bandaging to prevent swelling, and protection for your toe. If the bunion is too severe and there is a risk of permanent deformity occurring, surgery may be the only solution.
Several non-surgical bunion treatments are available to alleviate pressure and pain, but they won’t get rid of the bunion:
- Wear well-fitting footwear – As a rule, you should purchase shoes that are measured by foot width first. It is best to consider roomy, comfortable shoes with extra space in the toe area.
- Use a pad or splint – To keep the toes straight, use a splint or tape the foot in a normal position while it’s resting overnight.
- Take pain-reducing medication – A professional will always advise you of the best medication to take. Anti-inflammatory drugs can reduce pain and swelling; cortisone injections can also be administered to help reduce the swelling in your joints.
- Cooling or soaking- Relief can be attained through a warm bath. Furthermore, icing a bunion can help to relieve soreness and inflammation.
The causes of bunions
A bunion happens when your foot structure changes due to the natural alignment of your foot. Bunions are also often caused by a hereditary foot structure, but certain types of shoes can make them worse over time. Shoes that squeeze the toes together can cause a bunion to grow, partly due to the shoe’s shape. Shoes that fit poorly or don’t support the natural shape of your feet can also cause bunions, which is why it’s important to buy footwear that fits well.
Other things that can cause or worsen a bunion are:
- Medical conditions such as arthritis or gout
- Consistently wearing ill-fitting shoes
- An injury to the foot that puts excess stress on the front of the foot
Choosing shoes for your foot type can help prevent bunions before they start. If you have low or high arches and wide or narrow feet, you should choose a shoe that allows enough room in the toe area.
Shoes are never the same size and style, no matter where you buy them. Just like our feet shift and change shape and size throughout their lifetime, no shoes will ever fit the same; this is why it’s essential to check your foot size frequently to avoid foot discomfort.
If you feel like you could be suffering from a bunion, contact us today. We can accurately assess and work towards treating the cause of your foot pain.
*This blog contains general information about medical conditions. You must not rely upon the information in this blog as medical advice. Medical advice should always be sought from an appropriately qualified podiatrist such as ourselves.