Bunions are large, bony, uncomfortable bumps that develop along the inner edge of your foot, at the base of your big toe.
As bunions progress, the bump gets larger, and the big toe moves further out of place—eventually pushing against or crossing over the next toe.
The friction and pressure that develop between the bunion and the inside of the shoe can cause irritation, pain, swelling, and skin breakdown. Over time, the joint may become arthritic, and walking becomes more and more painful.
In order to prevent bunions from progressing to this painful stage, it’s best to seek help for them as early as possible.
What Causes Bunions?
Leading risk factors for bunions include:
- Foot structure. The natural structure or biomechanics of your feet may divert excessive pressure toward the joint at the base of the big toe, increasing your risk of developing bunions. This is one reason why bunions tend to run in families. You may have inherited a faulty foot structure from mom or dad.
- Shoe gear. Wearing shoes that are too tight in the toe box or lack proper support and cushioning can trigger faster development of bunions.
- Various toe and foot injuries, including stubbing or jamming your toe, can destabilize the big toe joint and increase the risk of bunion formation.
How Are Bunions Treated?
Like other progressive bony deformities, bunions do not get better on their own. They will only get worse and worse, until you seek help.
Conservative treatments are always the preferred choice. The goal of nonsurgical treatment is to stop the pain and stop the bunion from getting worse than it already is. Procedures that we might consider include:
- Padding the bunion to reduce friction and pressure caused by your shoes.
- Evaluating your shoe gear and switching you to roomier, better-fitting shoes.
- Providing a pair of shoe inserts or custom orthotics to keep weight and pressure away from the unstable joint.
- Providing splints that help keep your toes aligned properly while you sleep.
- Recommending stretches and physical therapy exercises that can help you maintain joint mobility as much as possible and reduce pain.
- Caring for any existing corns or calluses along the foot.
- Providing any pain-relieving medications that may be necessary.
If you seek help for your bunions early, before symptoms become severe, conservative treatments such as these are often effective at helping you maintain a pain-free, active lifestyle.
However, severe bunions that do not respond to conservative treatments will most likely require surgical correction and realignment. Several different surgical procedures may be considered, based on your age, health, and the severity of your bunion.
That said, we always prefer to avoid surgery if we can. So don’t wait until your bunion is swollen and painful to seek our help! To schedule an appointment with Trinity Foot Center, please call us today at (972) 293-9650.
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|Tuesday||8:30am - 5pm|
|Wednesday||8:30am - 5pm|
|Thursday||8:30am - 6pm|
|Friday||8:30am - Noon|
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1801 N. Hampton Road
DeSoto, TX 75115