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How Can I Prevent My Bunions from Getting Worse?

How Can I Prevent My Bunions from Getting Worse?

Bunions are common, affecting a third of people over 65 in the United States. Without surgery, there’s no way to fully correct the misalignment that causes a bunion. However, many nonsurgical therapies can decrease your discomfort and slow bunion progression.

The expert team at Foot & Ankle Specialists of Ohio shares the facts about bunions, what causes them, and the treatments that help prevent worsening.

Understanding bunions

A bunion is a bony lump at the base of the big toe, where the first metatarsal bone forms a joint with the phalange (big toe). The skin-covered bulge, actually the head of the metatarsal bone, protrudes from the side of the foot.

The bump occurs when the metatarsal shifts out of position in the joint. This movement also causes the big toe to slant inward as it loses stability, eventually lapping over the second toe if the condition progresses. Bunions can develop on one or both feet.

Caused by the same type of bony misalignment, a bunionette (tailor’s bunion) can occur on the outer foot at the joint where the fifth metatarsal bone connects with the little toe.

Children and teens can develop bunions, likely related to their DNA, but they are much more common in adults and tend to worsen over time without treatment.

What are the long-term effects of bunions?

A mild bunion may not cause symptoms other than a slight bulge at the joint. However, bunions frequently cause more pronounced symptoms as the condition worsens.

You may experience:

Bunions can also make it difficult to find shoes that fit comfortably (or at all) as the structural misalignment advances.

Preventing worsening bunion deformity

Other than corrective surgery, the primary treatment for bunions is to prevent the structural misalignment from worsening. Because arthritis and other conditions can cause similar symptoms, bunion treatment at Foot & Ankle Specialists of Ohio starts with an accurate diagnosis.

Based on the results of an evaluation, your symptoms, and level of misalignment, your specialist may recommend:

Early treatment offers the best chance of preventing a bunion from worsening. If your symptoms are severe and interfere with mobility or quality of life, your specialist may recommend minimally invasive surgery to correct the misalignment and prevent future bunion formation.

Schedule an evaluation at Foot & Ankle Specialists of Ohio today for top-level care that’s always patient-focused. Call the office or request an appointment online.

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