Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Solutions to prevent bunion

What are bunions?

Bunions are called hallux abducto valgus in medical terms. They are an enlargement and a deviation of the large toe which could be accompanied by swelling and lesions. Bunions occur due to a variety of reasons. They could be hereditary. They could be caused by wearing ill fitting, uncomfortable shoes for long periods of time. When ill fitting shoes are worn there is friction between the shoe and the large toe which leads to bunions. The toe is pushed inwards at the end causing the knuckle of the toes to seemingly protrude out giving a triangular shape to that part of the foot. In severe cases the inward deviation of the big toe could be so severe that it actually goes over or under the second toe.

Symptoms of bunions

The signs and symptoms of a bunion include swelling, redness or soreness around your big toe joint, persistent or intermittent pain, a large protrusion on the side or base of your large toes and appearance of corns and calluses on the big toe. Thickening of the skin at the base of the big toe and restriction of the movement of your big toe accompanied by intense pain are other symptoms. If the bunion has been forming for a while, the patient could be in so much pain that even walking could get difficult.

Bunion Prevention

Bunions form over a long period of time. Even for people who have protruding knuckles, the formation of a bunion can be prevented by wearing shoes that can accommodate the protrusion. When people who already have protruding knuckles wear close fitting shoes, the friction will be more and the formation of bunions will be swifter. Taking care of the feet during childhood and the teenage years can help control the formation of bunions for a long time.

Simple foot exercises can strengthen your feet and help you avoid bunions. Wear shoes that fit properly and that do not cramp or pinch your toes. Wearing high heels or pointed toes should be kept to an absolute minimum or not at all.

Treatment of bunions

If you already suffer from bunions, here are a couple of things that you can do to help lessen the pain.
  • Wear comfortable shoes that have enough toe space
  • Open toes sandals which are not constricting is a good idea, at least till the swelling and pain of the bunion comes down.
  • Wear socks if you have to wear shoes, so that there is less friction between the toe and the shoe.
  • Have a warm foot soak with Epsom salts and moisturize your feet regularly to keep it soft and to prevent chaffing.
  • If you have to wear closed shoes to work, take them off and air your feet a couple of times a day.
Surgical Options for bunions

If you are suffering from a severe case of bunions and are in a lot of pain, the podiatrist may suggest a surgical procedure to remove the bunion. Most foot doctors use surgery only as the last measure. They will try to help you cope with the symptoms of bunions with preventive care and oral and topical treatments as much as they can. Only in rare cases do podiatrists consider surgery.

As in most cases, prevention is better than cure. If you do have a history of bunions, then you should take care to wear footwear that does not aggravate the bunion. If you see any symptoms related to bunions, see a doctor immediately. The faster it is detected, the swifter the treatment would be.

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