By Christina DeBusk
If you’ve ever had a bunion, then you know they can be excruciating. Each step becomes a test of your ability to rise above the pain, sending you in search of any remedy that may possibly provide relief.
What is a Bunion?
According to WebMD, “A bunion is an unnatural, bony hump that forms at the base of the big toe where it attaches to the foot,” causing the toe to move toward your other toes while the joint where it attaches to your foot protrudes out. The protrusion is caused by a dislocation of sorts, and it can continue to get worse with time.
Bunions, also referred to as hallux valgus, aren’t limited to your big toe either. They can also form on your little toe, in which case it is referred to as a bunionette.
Bunions and bunionettes often occur when there is a structural abnormality or issue in your foot, which is why they can appear among many members of your family who all share the same general bone structure in this area of the body. They can also be self-created, which is generally the case for a large number of women who often choose to wear pointy-toed high heel shoes.
How can foot orthotics help?
If your bunion is caused by a structural issue in your foot, foot orthotics can help by correcting the initial structural issue by more evenly distributing your body weight as you walk. At a minimum, they can at least stop the problem from getting worse.
The American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) also suggests home treatments such as using bunion pads and ice on the affected area, choosing shoes that leave enough room for your toes, and not wearing a heel over two inches in height.
What if your bunion doesn’t hurt?
Even though some bunions don’t result in a lot of pain, that doesn’t mean they should be ignored. If left untreated, they can continue to worsen, eventually putting you in a tremendous amount of pain. So, you’re better off taking care of them in their initial stages, potentially saving you from a lot of discomfort down the road.