One of the most common foot issues affecting people is bunions. A bunion is a protrusion of the metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint at the base of the big toe. Women are especially prone to developing bunions due to footwear that forces the toes into awkward and tight positions. While most shoes available for men are built for support and comfort, women’s footwear are often built for style and fashion.
However, bunions tend to run in families, and susceptibility can also be inherited. Anatomy, such as too high or too low arches, is another risk factor for bunions.
Many consider bunions an aesthetic issue, but this is not true. Bunions can affect your balance and lead to the inflammation of the bursa in the foot. If you care about the health of your feet as well as comfort, it helps to know how to treat bunions.
Treatment for bunions will depend on the severity of your condition. For mild cases, applying ice to the area usually relieves the discomfort by reducing swelling and pain.
When bunions rub against your shoes, it can cause pain. There are bunion pads that you can purchase over-the-counter to prevent this highly uncomfortable friction. Early-stage bunions usually respond well to conservative approaches.
Changing your footwear and avoiding ones that exacerbate the problem in the first place can help. The type of footwear you need will have ample space for your toes and will be roomy and comfortable. Custom shoe inserts can also help even out the distribution of pressure. The generic shoe inserts you can buy from the drugstore may not be effective. You will get better results from inserts prescribed by a podiatrist. Even without bunions, every person’s feet are different and unique. You will get the best results from prescription orthotics that are custom-made for you.
Most patients are able to recover from bunion symptoms without surgery. Typically, conservative efforts such as good footwear, ice therapy, and pain medications are enough to relieve symptoms. For severe pain that affects mobility, podiatrists can administer cortisone injections.
If pain persists despite conservative treatment methods, surgery may be an option. This is only recommended to patients with bunions accompanied by severe pain that interferes with daily functions and causes balance issues.
There are several surgical techniques for bunion removal. Some examples include:
- The removal of the swollen tissue on the toe
- Removal of a bone in your big toe to straighten it
- Realign the ligaments, tendons, and bones in your foot in an effort to correct the abnormal angle of the big toe
Professional Bunion Care and Treatment in Cincinnati, Ohio
The podiatrists at Cincinnati Foot & Ankle Care provide the highest quality foot and ankle care to patients with podiatric issues, including bunions. If you have bunions or another foot issue that is negatively affecting your life, let us help you.