A bunion (also known as hallux valgus) is a painful condition that affects the front of your foot. The big toe bends towards the second toe, and the bone at its base becomes pushed out to the side. This can cause the bunion, which can create difficulty when walking, which could change your gait and lead to further problems, not to mention they are sometimes extremely painful.
Smaller bunions, referred to as bunionettes, can also develop on the joint of your little toe.
Bunions are the most common problem affecting the front of the foot in adults. You’re more likely to develop a bunion as you get older, and they’re much more common in women than in men.
You may have a bunion if you:
If you have a bunion, it can get bigger over time; in doing so, it may cause more pain and make it harder to walk. You may also experience balance problems, making you more likely to fall. Additionally, finding comfortable shoes may become difficult.
Your bunion can become painful when the skin rubs against your shoe. A bursa, which is a fluid-filled space, may form under your skin. Bursitis, which is the swelling of the bursa, can cause pain.
If you have any of these symptoms, you should make an appointment to see a podiatrist as soon as possible.
It is not certain whether tight, high-heeled or too-narrow shoes cause bunions or whether particular footwear merely contributes to bunion development.
However, there are several identified causes of bunions, including:
Bunions might also be associated with certain types of arthritis, especially inflammatory types such as rheumatoid arthritis.
Bunions usually don’t require medical attention but can be irritating and sore. See your Footfocus podiatrist if:
If you are experiencing persistent pain in your foot and think it could be due to a bunion, it’s time to visit a podiatrist. Your symptoms are only likely to worsen without treatment as time goes by.
You should also visit a podiatrist for a professional diagnosis if you experience foot pain after standing or walking for longer periods, after a run or after playing sports and exercising. This could be a sign of a structural problem in your feet and, similarly to bunions, will only worsen over time.
Although there is no medical treatment aside from surgical correction in some cases, we can help alleviate your discomfort and provide advice and guidance on how to prevent bunions from leading onto other conditions.
Some of the best things that you can do to prevent and ease the pain of bunions are:
The team at Footfocus Podiatry are experts at identifying when more complicated conditions are presenting themselves as a result of a bunion.
These foot concerns can include:
Bursitis: Small fluid-filled pads (bursae) that cushion bones, tendons and muscles near your joints that become inflamed.
Hammer toe: An abnormal bend in the middle joint of a toe, causing pain and pressure.
Metatarsalgia: A condition that causes pain and inflammation in the ball of your foot.
Bunions are one of the most common foot problems among adults but can often be avoided if you take care of your feet and follow some of these bunion prevention methods.
You can also do stretches to aid in the strength and flexibility of your feet. Some of the best are:
If you are experiencing sore toes and suspect you have a bunion, book an appointment with one of our friendly and experienced podiatrists. To ensure you maintain healthy feet and wellbeing all year round, book a regular Podiatry appointment so you have the freedom to move, enjoy, grow and do more of what you love. Sign up to our newsletter for more information, offers and foot care advice.