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What are Bunions?

Posted onJuly 27th, 2015

Bunions are protrusions at the part of your foot where the big toe is attached. They occur because your big toe pushes on the toe next to it, causing the joint where it is attached to jut out. This can also happen on the other side of the foot to the joint where your pinky toe is attached. If it happens here, it is described as a “bunionette”. This can often times be incredibly painful, and should be dealt with sooner rather than later. Below are some of the risk factors for bunions, some symptoms that should help you recognize whether your feet have them, and the treatment options available to you.


Risk factors:


Heredity: Those with a history of bunions in their family maybe at higher risk because they share the same foot type, congenital deformities, certain types of arthritis that result from heredity, or lack of natural foot strength required to avoid bunions.


Foot Injuries: If you have had foot injuries in the past, you are likely more susceptible to bunions because your foot has been weakened by the injury, and cannot provide the proper support for the rest of your body. This causes more pressure on the joint and makes the bone protrude at an unnatural angle.


Occupation/Lifestyle: If you have an occupation or lifestyle that puts a lot of stress on your feet, you may be more prone to bunions. Excess pressure on your joints can can cause them to become inflamed. A job that has you on your feet all day, for instance, may mean a higher risk of bunions.



The symptoms of having bunions include but are not limited to the following.


  • The joint below your big toe is bulging out away from your foot
  • You have swelling, redness, or soreness at this joint that is making you uncomfortable
  • You have restricted movement of your big toe
  • You are experiencing pain at the joint where your big toe attaches to your foot


Treatment options


There are conservative treatment options that include small changes to your daily life like switching to a pair of shoes that actually fit or getting shoe inserts; padding, taping, or splinting your feet; certain types of medications; applying ice.


More extreme solutions may include surgical options that deal with removing swollen tissue, straightening the big toe or the bone to which it is attached, or joining the affected bones at the joint.


If you have bunions, you should consult a podiatrist. They will help you figure out your best treatment options depending on the severity of your situation. In any case, it is better to catch the issue in the early stages. Should you notice that you have any of these symptoms or risk factors in your life, consult Kondiles today!


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