In recent years, bunions have become increasingly common worldwide. Nearly one-third of adults experience them, particularly individuals over 45. This is why maintaining foot health is essential to a properly functioning and balanced skeletal system. Let’s explore how to prevent bunions, what causes them, and what the symptoms are.
Bunions: What Are They Exactly?
Have you noticed a bony bump at the base of your big toe? And, has it even started to limit your mobility? Not only this, but has your big toe started to pull toward your other toes, forcing the base of your big toe to stick out? These are signs that you likely have a bunion.
Although bunions aren’t a life-threatening condition, they can become increasingly uncomfortable over time. If left untreated, bunions can cause several other painful ailments that severely limit your ability to walk and perform everyday tasks.
If you haven’t experienced a bunion but someone in your immediate family has, bunions may be in your future. Since your foot shape and structure is hereditary, bunions tend to run in the family. Although outside factors can contribute to this condition, it is imperative to learn how to prevent them before they form.
Here are some measures to take for bunion prevention:
- Regularly stretch and strengthen your feet. Strength and flexibility is the key to success when it comes to your bodily health. Keeping your feet strong and limber will help minimize the risk of bunions developing.
- Remember to rest. We spend so much time on our feet, so it is vital to give our feet a break whenever possible.
- Wear shoes that fit you properly. If your shoes are too loose or too tight, that can create tension or cause your feet to slide back and forth. This can put a lot of stress on the foot and contribute to bunions. When putting your foot in your shoe, you shouldn’t feel any pinching. Moreover, having to “break in” your shoes is a sign that they aren’t a good match. Also, adding arch support in your shoes (if there wasn’t any built-in) is helpful for your feet.
- Avoid wearing high heels. Although you may like how they look, nothing puts more pressure on your toes than wearing heels. Wearing flats is much more supportive of your feet. If you aren’t ready to give up your high heels, keeping the height under two inches will minimize potential pain and pressure.
- Be attentive to foot changes. If you notice pain or swelling, be sure to increase your self-care. If that doesn’t help, make an appointment with a podiatrist or go to urgent care.
Prevent Bunions: Know the Symptoms and Causes
Bunions can’t always be prevented. Unfortunately, there is a hereditary component to the condition. However, it is possible to keep the pain to a minimum by educating yourself. Knowing the symptoms, causes, and possible complications can help you to take care when bunions develop. This way, you can prevent further bunions from developing.
- Swelling, redness, or soreness around your big toe joint
- The development of corns or calluses from your toes rubbing together
- Consistent pain or pain that comes and goes
- Limited mobility of your big toe
- A big bump on the outside of the base of your big toe
- Inherited foot type
- Deformities that formed at birth
- Stress or injures
If you have bunions and don’t take proper care, it is possible to develop other foot conditions as well. These complications include:
- Bursitis: When the small pads that cushion the bones near your joints become inflamed
- Hammertoe: An abnormal bend in the middle joint of a toe, causing pain and pressure
- Metatarsalgia: Pain in the ball of your foot
Visit Diablo Foot & Ankle Today
If you’re experiencing pain due to bunions, make an appointment through our website to see one of our Board-Certified Podiatrists today!
Common Podiatry Questions
What is a Podiatrist?
A podiatrist is a doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the foot and ankle.
What does a Podiatrist treat?
A podiatrist is a doctor who specializes in the medical and surgical care of the feet. They can treat conditions such as ingrown toenails, fungal toenails, bunions, hammertoes, and plantar fasciitis.
What’s the difference between a Podiatrist and Orthopedist?
A Podiatrist and Orthopedist are very similar to each other in many ways. They use most of the same tools and treat a lot of the same conditions. The main difference between the two is their medical training. Podiatrists are trained exclusively on the foot and ankle, whereas the Orthopedic is trained on the whole body with an additional year of training on the foot and ankle.