Remove Those Painful Bunions.

Bunion Pain Relief

As anyone who has ever stubbed their toe or stepped on a Lego piece will tell you, pain in your feet and toes can have a serious effect on your quality of life as well as your overall well-being. Even an ingrown toenail can make walking, wearing shoes, and doing your daily activities uncomfortable and painful. 

Another serious foot issue that affects many people is the presence of bunions. Although they are not life-threatening or be the source of incapacitating disabilities, bunions can severely impact those suffering.

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What is a Bunion?

Bunions are formed when the toes are squeezed together an, over time, the big toe tissue gets separated from the joint.

As anyone who has ever stubbed their toe or stepped on a Lego piece will tell you, pain in your feet and toes can have a serious effect on your quality of life as well as your overall well-being. Even an ingrown toenail can make walking, wearing shoes, and doing your daily activities uncomfortable and painful. 

Another serious foot issue that affects many people is the presence of bunions. Although they are not life-threatening or be the source of incapacitating disabilities, bunions can severely impact those suffering.

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What Causes a Bunion?

If you struggle with bunions, talk to our professionals. We are eager to help your feet reach better health.

While the exact cause of bunions is largely debated in the medical world, factors have been known to cause bunions to include certain inherited foot types, foot stress or injuries, and deformities at birth. They might also be associated with arthritis, especially the particularly inflammatory types such as rheumatoid arthritis.

Some medical professionals have also argued that wearing certain kinds of shoes may cause bunion development. If your shoes are too tight, too narrow, or have high heels, you may be at risk for bunions because the shoes will crowd your toes when they are forced into a tight space such as the shoe's front tip.
Certain conditions can also complicate the existence of bunions, which can make your feet even more painful when trying to do daily activities. These complications include bursitis, hammertoe, and metatarsalgia.

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Bunion Symptoms

Because you may not have a medical degree or experience with podiatric conditions, it may be difficult for you to determine if the pain, redness, or soreness you are experiencing is a bunion or possibly something more serious. 

If you are unsure whether or not you are dealing with a bunion's painful effects, here are some of the most common signs and symptoms of the condition:

  1. Bulging bump on the outside of the base of the big toe
  2. Swelling, redness, or soreness around the joint
  3. Corns or calluses (often where the first and second toes rub together)
  4. Pain
  5. Limited movement

While bunions often do not need professional medical treatment, it is best to seek out our foot and ankle specialists' medical advice at Rogers Foot & Ankle Institute in Utah County to make sure that the pain you are experiencing can be diagnosed and taken care of.

How Are Bunions Diagnosed?

The medical diagnosis for bunions is quite simple when done by a professional. At Rogers Foot & Ankle Institute, our specialists will examine your feet. They can determine if a bunion causes the symptoms you are experiencing or if there is some other condition that may exist. We will also use x-rays of your foot to determine the best way to treat your bunions. The severity of the condition will help our doctors plan your treatment strategy.

How to Relieve Bunion Pain Without Surgery

Bunion pain can be easily relieved without surgery by making a few changes in your daily routine, such as changing the shoes you wear or putting bunion pads in your shoes. Wearing roomy, comfortable shoes that do not squeeze your toes and provide plenty of space for movement is ideal.

The padding or cushioning will also act as a buffer between your toes and your shoes. Prescription orthotics may be necessary for some bunion sufferers if the ordinary non-medicated pads or inserts do not relieve the pain.

It can also be useful to take over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin OB), or naproxen sodium (Aleve) to relieve and control the pain. If it persists, Cortisone injections may be necessary. Additionally, icing your bunions after having been on your feet for long periods can be very useful if there is inflammation. Be sure to check with your doctor about icing if you have reduced feeling or circulation issues in your feet.

Bunion Surgical and Treatment Options

When the more conservative bunion treatment methods are not effective, you may need to have bunion surgery to relieve the pain. Every patient is different and has specific circumstances to account for, so we do not believe in a "one size fits all" treatment plan. Your doctor will examine your bunion and decide which surgical option is best for your condition. 

Possible surgical procedures that our experienced Utah County podiatrists at the Roger Foot & Ankle Institute may recommend include:

  1. Removal of swollen tissue from around the big toe joint
  2. Removal of part of the bone to straighten the big toe
  3. Realignment of bones in the forefoot to correct abnormalities in the angle of your big toe joint
  4. Permanently joining the bones of your affected joint

 

You may walk on your affected foot right after surgery because the procedure is minimally invasive. Still, most podiatrists will recommend that you rest and recover for weeks up to months after surgery. 

How Painful Is Bunion Surgery Recovery?

The type of surgery needed for your bunion will depend greatly on the severity of your condition, which will also be a factor in the pain you experience. For the most part, people report having little to no pain because the surgery is minimally invasive, and the surgeries can be done on an outpatient basis. On some occasions, hospitalization may be necessary.

In these cases, the hospitalization stay will generally not be lengthy (maybe a day or so). We will want to monitor your condition and make sure that your feet are healing quickly so that you can get back to a healthy life.

What Happens If You Don’t Fix a Bunion?

Unfortunately, bunions will not simply disappear on their own, and the longer you live with a bunion, the worse the discomfort can get. Untreated bunions have the potential to lead to other serious issues. These issues include, but are not limited to:

  1. Severe and increasingly worse pain and discomfort
  2. Crossover toe - the second toe crosses over and ends up on top of the big toe
  3. Metatarsalgia (hammertoe)
  4. Difficulty standing or walking due to balance problems
  5. Osteoarthritis or bursitis caused by damage sustained in the joint of the big toe by the bunion

Making changes in your daily routines such as the shoe inserts or alternate types of shoes can certainly help relieve the pain. However, the bunions will likely still need further medical attention in the long run to avoid more severe complications.

Do Bunions Cause Ankle, Heel, or Knee Pain?

If left untreated, bunions can indirectly cause pain in your ankles, knees, and heels. Having to adjust the way you walk or stand can have adverse effects on your ankles, heels, and knees. Also, a hard bump can develop on your heel (known as a heel bunion), so you must have your bunions examined by a trained podiatrist, especially if you notice that you are making adjustments gait.

Contact Our Experienced Foot and Ankle Specialists

If you are suffering from bunions' pain and discomfort, contact our experienced foot and ankle specialists at the Rogers Foot & Ankle Institute. Our doctors have seen it all when it comes to feet, and we are confident that we will help you find the treatment you need. 

We offer treatments including taping, padding, therapy, and surgery so that you can get back on your feet living a pain-free life as soon as possible. We truly care about our patients and want to provide everyone with the best possible podiatric care. 

Call today to schedule an appointment with our professional Utah County podiatrists. In addition to bunion pain relief, our doctors can also treat various other foot and ankle conditions, including heel spurs, athlete's foot, tendonitis, ankle fractures, hammertoes, and ankle sprains, flat feet, and many more. If it's a foot or ankle condition, we can help. 

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