Bunions, often referred to as hallux valgus, is a common condition prevailing amongst females but can also affect men. Bunions can be a painful and often embarrassing condition in which a bony protrusion presents at the base of the joint at the big toe, however, in some cases, bunions don’t cause any pain. Bunions, if left untreated and ignored may require invasive corrective surgery with a recovery time of 6-12 weeks.
How Bunions Form?
Bunions occur when the big toe joint becomes enlarged due to the buildup of fluid and tissue around it. This causes the toe to point away from the body instead of pointing straight ahead. Over time, the misalignment of the toe joint will become worse as more pressure is put on it by your shoes and activities that require you to move your feet. The bursa at the base of the big toe joint can become inflamed, sometimes leading to pain and swelling which can further worsen your condition.
What Causes bunions?
One of the main causes of bunions is the tightly fitting shoes we wear. Humans have evolved to walk on uneven surfaces in our bare feet, not on flat surfaces crammed into tight-fitting shoes. However, modern life doesn’t often afford us the opportunity to walk around in our bare feet on uneven terrain, especially if you live in a cold damp climate like in Ireland and the UK. I’m sure the people of Northern Europe don’t often get the opportunity to walk in their bare feet throughout the winter either.
People develop bunions differently. Some people inherit them through genetics, especially if there is a family history of flat feet. Other mechanisms of development include foot injuries and inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. If any of these conditions are something that affects you daily, then our staff are here to help. Through our one-to-one consultations or our online foot and gait analyses, we can make recommendations that suit your personal needs and requirements.
If you are experiencing problems with your feet and are concerned that you are being affected by bunions, you are not alone. The following symptoms are often indicative of bunions and we are here to provide the solutions you need. The common signs and symptoms of a bunion include:
- Inability to bend the big toe, or pain and burning when you try to bend it.
- Difficulty wearing regular shoes.
- Corns or calluses at the base of the big toe
- Numbness in the big toe
Here at StepRight.ie we supply footwear with a wide toe box, allowing space for the forefoot to do what it’s designed to do. We have sandals with inbuilt support so you can be comfortable in the summer too. Our arch supports can stop the progression of your bunion by supporting the arch which helps distribute the pressure more evenly throughout the foot, improving your confidence whilst on your feet and the quality of your day.
As well as offering footwear solutions for those affected we also cater to those looking to maintain their foot health by providing services from our foot health practitioners in our Waterford and New Ross Clinics