A bunion is a bony bump that forms at the base of your big toe. When some of the bones at the front part of your foot shift out of alignment and push the big toe inwards, the joint of your big toe can stick out to form the bunion.
Unfortunately, bunions are permanent unless treated with surgery, and they grow and get worse over time. However, there are things you can do to care for a foot with a bunion.
Foot Care and Bunions Without Surgery
Unless you opt for surgery on your bunions, you are stuck with them. However, not all bunions are painful, and you can slow their development with a few sensible foot care measures.
The development of a bunion is often attributed to excessive pressure being applied to the big toe, so one way you can reduce the chance of a bunion forming is to maintain a healthy weight. Having less body weight will put less strain on your feet and reduce the likelihood of the bones getting pushed out of alignment.
A bunion that isn’t ordinarily painful may cause you some issues if it protrudes enough that the skin surrounding the bunion rubs on the inside of the shoe. In this case, the friction can irritate and inflame the skin and cause callouses to form.
Moleskin or gel-filled pads may help provide some cushioning for the bunion. Over-the-counter arch supports are also available that can help position the foot correctly. Your bunion may also cause you less discomfort if you buy shoes that have a wider toe area than what you usually wear.
When to Seek Treatment
Many people live with bunions without issue, but if your bunion has become painful, or you find it cosmetically challenging for poolside social gatherings, you should know that you do have options.
Depending on your circumstances, bunion surgery is likely to be fast and almost pain-free. In a lot of cases, your pain management after bunion surgery will consist of nothing more than the same over the counter medication you would use for a headache.
Most bunion surgery patients are also able to return to work on the same day. If you would like to learn more about how you can live with bunions, or be free of them forever, visit Northwest Surgery Center today to discover your options.