Bunions

Footech President

Jacques Martin, D.S.S., B.Sc., C.Ped.
President, Footech Inc., Certified Pedorthist

Bunions

A bunion is a bony protrusion on the joint where the big toe meets the other main bones of the foot. Bunions cause the end of the big toe to bend towards and crowd the other toes. Bunions may be initially painless. However, as the big toes begins to turn in towards the other toes, redness, pain, swelling and tenderness in the joint area can occur. Pressure from footwear pressing against the joint can cause discomfort. Bunions are more common in women than men, and can be caused by wearing shoes that are too tights, poor foot mechanics, flat feet, arthritis, and bone deformites. Excessive rubbing of the bunion against footwear can cause changes in the skin such as calluses or corns. Other complications can include ingrown toenails caused by increased pressure from the big toe onto the other toes, as well as hammer toe- a condition where the toe is raised and points upwards from base. Joint flexibility and range of motion can also be inhibited.

Early detection and treatment can relieve many of the symptoms of bunions, which tend to worsen over time. Non-surgical treatments include cushioning of the area with padding; the use of medication to relieve inflammation; and physiotherapy. The use of properly-fitted custom orthotics will give greater stability to the foot and allow for improved movement. Foot orthotics can provide the necessary support to prevent further aggravation of the bunion. The best protection against developing this painful condition is to protect and care for your feet and to avoid tight and narrow-ftting shoes.

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