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How to Handle Your Bunions
By Family Foot and Ankle Associates of Maryland
November 18, 2014
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Find out the best ways to reduce bunion symptoms.

A bunion is a painful condition characterized by a bony lump that forms around the joint of the big toe. Over time, a bunion can even cause the big toe to lean inwards on the rest of your toes. You may even find that certain shoes that used to fit now cause pressure and pain when you slip them on.

Almost 25 percent of adults between 18-65 and about 67 percent of adults over the age of 65 have bunions. While this condition might be common, it doesn’t mean you have to just deal with its consequences. There are several ways to properly handle your bunion problems, including both surgical and non-surgical options.

Nonsurgical options

The main goal of bunion treatment is to alleviate pain and to increase mobility. For those who aren’t experiencing any discomfort, treatment will most likely not be necessary; however, for those who are experiencing pressure and pain, we always opt for conservative, nonsurgical treatments first.

  • Proper shoes: One of the most important things you can do to help with bunion pain is to wear comfortable shoes that give your feet room. Opt for shoes that offer good support, and stay away from high heels and narrow shoes, which put a lot of pressure on the big toe joint.
  • Orthotics: Sometimes moleskin patches are often enough buffer to protect the bunion from rubbing against shoes; however, talk to us about our custom-made orthotics and whether they could help your bunion problems.
  • Medication: Most patients experience some relief from bunion-related pain and swelling when they use over-the-counter NSAIDs (E.g., ibuprofen) and anti-inflammatories (e.g. Tylenol).
  • Icing: Besides medication, icing your bunion can also help with reducing pain and swelling. Always be sure that your skin never comes in direct contact with ice; always wrap ice in a towel. Apply the ice to the bunion for about 10 to 20 minutes at a time, several times throughout the day.

Surgical options

If we’ve exhausted all the conservative treatment options and your bunion pain is interfering with your day-to-day activities, then we may recommend surgery. Bunion surgery is different for every patient based on his or her condition and there are over 100 different kinds of bunion surgeries. If we think surgery is the best option for relieving your bunion symptoms, then we will talk with you about your surgical options.

Don’t let bunion pain keep you from doing what you want. Call us today to schedule an appointment. The sooner you call, the sooner we can get you feeling better.