Bunions are among the most common foot deformities—by some estimates as many as 1 in 4 American adults may have one.
Unfortunately, serious bunions can also be painful and debilitating. They frequently get in the way of cherished hobbies like running and hiking, and can even make simple day to day tasks difficult.
Don’t wait until your bunion reaches this point to get help!
If you seek our help before symptoms become noticeable, you’ll have more treatment options to choose from. You might even be able to delay or prevent surgery.
What Is A Bunion?
A bunion is a foot deformity caused by destabilization and misalignment in the joint located at the base of your big toe.
When this joint becomes unstable, the big toe begins to move toward the neighboring 2nd toe.
At the same time, the joint itself appears to enlarge as a large bony bump forms along the inside of the foot, at the base of the toe, and this may get larger and more swollen with time.
What Are the Symptoms of Bunions?
Reddened, swollen skin over the joint at the base of the big toe tends to be the first obvious sign that a bunion is forming. This can happen just before, or concurrently with, the formation of a hard, bony bump.
You may not feel much pain or impairment at this stage. However, as the bunion progressively gets worse, you may develop:
- Intermittent to constant pain, swelling, and soreness—particularly when wearing certain shoes or participating in specific activities.
- Stiffness and arthritis in the big toe joint, which may restrict motion and prevent you from engaging in some activities.
- Corns, calluses, or other skin irritations where the bump or the toes press against shoes or each other.
What Causes Bunions? Who Gets Them?
Although they are often associated with seniors and women, the truth is that anyone at any age can develop a bunion—men, women, athletes, office workers, even teenagers.
We can’t always identify a precise cause or set of causes for your bunion. However, the following factors are known to increase your risk:
- Genetics. Bunions do tend to run in families.
- Foot types. Certain foot structures and shapes (flat feet, for example) may place relatively more pressure on the big toe joint, leading to destabilization and a greater risk of bunions.
- Footwear. Frequently wearing shoes that are too narrow, insufficiently cushioned, or that place too much weight on the front of your feet (e.g. high heels) may trigger, or at least aggravate and accelerate, a bunion.
- Injuries. Your toe joint may become destabilized due to a specific traumatic injury, such as a stubbed or jammed toe, or simply as the result of long-term wear and tear.
What Can Lakes Foot and Ankle Associates Do For My Bunion?
Broadly speaking, bunions can be managed conservatively or reconstructed surgically.
This is where seeking help early works to your advantage. The less severe your bunion is, the more likely conservative management can help you. If you wait until the pain becomes unbearable, chances are surgery will be your only option.
The primary goal of conservative treatment is to enable you to enjoy your favorite activities and perform day-to-day tasks without pain or restriction. The bunion won’t go away or even get smaller, but if it is not yet severe, it may not noticeably impair your lifestyle.
We may recommend one or more of the following:
- Wearing wider, more comfortable shoes with appropriate cushioning and support
- Using taping or splinting to hold the toe in better alignment
- Using bunion pads to reduce friction and pressure and protect sensitive skin
- Wearing padded shoe inserts or custom orthotics
- Taking over-the-counter medications or using ice
- Removing corns and calluses
Unfortunately, many of our patients don’t come to see us until their bunions are fairly severe, making surgery inevitable.
But there’s good news:
- Both of our foot surgeons are trained in high-level bunion reconstruction techniques using the latest evidence-based research. This means quicker recovery times, lower risk of complications, and lower risk of recurrence for our patients.
- Our office is equipped with its own hospital-grade operating room, meaning we can perform surgery in a sterile environment without needing to go to a hospital or surgical center. This is not only convenient, but also can save you a significant amount of money.
- We can also offer advanced treatments such as MLS laser therapy, which can provide rapid pain relief and even accelerated healing of the surgical site after the operation.
The goal of surgery is to restore normal appearance and function to the feet, to the greatest extent possible.
Overall recovery times vary based on the severity of the bunion, the type of surgery performed, your health status, your ability to follow post-surgical instructions, and other factors.
That said, our goal is always to get you back on your feet, in regular shoes, and doing your regular activities as quickly as possible. Most patients make a return to full activity within a few months. We will discuss more specific guidelines and timetables with you at your appointment.
Want effective relief for your bunion pain—or maybe even delay or prevent surgery as long as possible? Give Lakes Foot and Ankle Associates a call today. You can reach our Commerce Township office today at (248) 360-3888.
It's Time To Leave Foot & Ankle Pain Behind!
*NOTE: Appointment request times are not guaranteed, nor do they constitute a scheduled appointment. Once you submit your request, a member of our staff will contact you as soon as possible to confirm your appointment time. For your safety and privacy, please do not submit any Protected Health Information (PHI) through the contact form found on this page.
9640 Commerce Rd Suite 102 Commerce Township, MI 48382
|Monday||8:30am – 5:00pm|
|Tuesday||9:00am – 5:00pm|
|Wednesday||8:30am – 5:00pm|
|Thursday||9:00am – 6:00pm|
|Friday||7:30 am – 4:00pm|
|Saturday||- Closed -|
|Sunday||- Closed -|
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