What Are Bunions?
A bunion is an enlarged bone on the side of the big toe that is angled outward. Depending on the severity of the bunion, the big toe may be angled mildly or sharply toward the other toes.
What Causes Bunions?Bunions can be caused by:
- Hereditary tendency
- Foot injury
- Neuromuscular disorder
- Congenital deformity ( a deformity that is present at birth)
- Loose joint movement
- Poorly fitting shoes
How Do Bunions Develop?
Most bunions form as the big toe responds to abnormal pressure on the foot joints. For example your foot may roll excessively inward during walking. Over time, this stress may cause the big toe to move toward the other toes. This in turn pushes the big toe joint outward. Bunions may develop along with inflammatory joint diseases such as osteoarthritis. They also often develop along with other foot problems, including hammertoes, corns and calluses.
Do They Need To Be Treated?
Yes. If left untreated, a bunion can become painful and may even interfere with standing and walking.
Prevention And Treatment of Bunions
- Wear roomy and comfortable shoes.
- Wear self-adhesive cushions to ease painful pressure and friction.
- Wear shoe inserts (orthotic devices) prescribed by your podiatrist and molded to your feet to help your feet function better.
- Medication such as corticosteroid injections and pain relievers may be used for temporary relief.
- In some cases, surgery bunionectomy is needed to remove the bunion and realign the toes.