Bunions are an enlargement of the bone on the medial side of the first metatarsophalangeal joint of the foot, commonly associated with a medial deviation of the big toe (hallux). The cause of bunions are a combination of a hereditary predisposition, poor foot biomechanics and wearing tight fitting shoes.
Bunions are typically painful for two reasons: one is the pain from the pressure of the shoes on the enlarged joint. The other is an “arthritis” like pain that develops inside the joint due to the pressures from the alignment of the joint.
The only way to properly deal with a bunion is with surgery. However, there are a number of things that may lead to some improvement in the joint and certainly help with the pain that may develop from the bunion.
To help bunions without surgery, then do this:
- Wear shoes that are wide enough so that there is no pressure from the shoe on the joint.
- There are pads that you can wear over and around the bunion so that there is less or no pressure on the bunion
- Bunion correctors can be useful to make small improvements in the angle of the big toe and make a big difference to the pains that may develop deep inside the joint.
- There are bunion exercises that can be done that will not get rid of the bunion, but they will keep the joint mobile and flexible which is good for that pain inside the joint and good for the longer term health of the joint.