When you have a bunion, a bony hump that develops on the side of your foot at the joint of your big toe, you might not initially notice any symptoms, but over time, your bunion can worsen, eventually leading to pain that keeps you off your feet. Matthew Paden, DPM, FACFAS, Dustin Kruse, DPM, MA, FACFAS, Brett Sachs, DPM, FACFAS, and the rest of the team at Rocky Mountain Foot and Ankle Center in Wheat Ridge, Colorado can prevent your bunion from worsening while restoring the alignment of your feet. Call or schedule an appointment online today.
A bunion is a bony hump that develops on the side of your foot where your big toe joins the rest of your foot, although bunions can also form on the little toe joint. When misalignment in your metatarsal bones pushes your big toe toward your other toes, stretching the big toe joint in the opposite direction, the bony growth develops on the joint.
Often the first sign of a bunion is a callus that forms on the side of your foot. Over time, as the bunion grows, you’ll notice that a red bump forms. Eventually, you will start to experience stiffness and pain around your joint and throughout your foot. If the bunion disrupts your gait, the pain may extend into your ankles and legs.
Bunions come from misalignment in the bones of your feet and toes. This misalignment can stem from an inherited foot type or shape; if one of your parents had bunions, your chances are increased. Foot injuries and congenital deformities can also lead to bunion development.
There’s a school of thought that wearing shoes with narrow toes or high heels that compress your toes and put extra pressure on the fronts of your feet can cause bunions. Regardless of whether this is true, squishing your toes into tight shoes can cause discomfort and may increase the progression of your bunion.
The best way to treat a bunion is to address it before it becomes painful and causes problems with wearing shoes.
Your podiatrist at Rocky Mountain Foot and Ankle Center will want to see your shoes and may suggest that you change to shoes with a wider toe box. He might also suggest wearing a splint or padding to gently correct the alignment of the joint and reduce pressure and stress on your bunion.
The podiatrist may also suggest that you wear custom orthotics to distribute pressure across your foot evenly. That can also lessen pressure on your bunion and prevent it from worsening.
In severe cases, your podiatrist can perform surgery to remove excess bone tissue and correct the alignment of the bones in your foot and toe.
If your bunion is painful, you can apply ice and take over-the-counter anti-inflammatories. Your podiatrist may also suggest a cortisone injection to reduce swelling.
Call or book an appointment online today if you’ve noticed signs of a bunion.