If you have noticed a bony bump at the base of your big toe, you may have a bunion. Bunions, also known as Hallux valgus, can exist on the joints of smaller toes as well, and are called bunionettes. Bunions form on the joint at the base of the big toe. They are caused by the big toe pushing up against the other toes. This in turn causes the big toe joint to go in the opposite direction that it was created to go and away from the normal profile of the foot.
Bunion causes are all related to the foot bearing and shifting weight unevenly, causing increased pressure and stress on joints and tendons of the foot. There are several causes of bunions. The most common cause seems to be wearing shoes that fit too tightly. Tight shoes can force the big toe in the direction it was not made to go in. Bunion causes can also be related to an inherited structural defect, as well as simple stress on the foot. Sometimes even medical conditions, like arthritis can cause bunions. High-heeled shoes and foot injuries are another cause of bunions. The WebMD website (www.mebmd.com) states that women are especially prone to bunions due to years of wearing high heeled shoes, tight shoes and pointed shoes, as all these types of shoes gradually push foot bones into a deviated shape.
According to the Mayo Clinic website (www.mayoclinic.com), typical symptoms of a bunion include a protruding bump at the base of the big toe, restricted movement, and sometimes chronic or acute pain. You may also notice corns or calluses where the first and second toes overlap, as well as thickening of skin at the base of the big toe. Some patients suffer from swelling and redness at the joint of the big toe, as other tissues besides the joint tissues can become swollen and irritated. Sometimes the pain of a bunion can be enough that you are unable to walk in normal shoes.
Taking care of a bunion when it first begins by wearing different shoes is the best way to treat a bunion and prevent it from getting worse. It is necessary to call your doctor if you experience continued pain, even after wearing better shoes, if you are prevented from doing your normal activities or if you notice redness or swelling, which can be a sign of infection. According to the National Institutes of Health website (www.nih.gov), if you are a diabetic patient having bunion symptoms you will want to contact your doctor right away.
Bunions can be painful and annoying. With the right treatment, they can be stopped. If you are noticing any of these symptoms it is wise to call your doctor and get them checked out before the bunion gets worse.
Bunion Treatments in Colorado Springs
If you are suffering from bunions, contact Colorado Springs bunions doctor, Kerry E. Berg, DPM at Intermountain Foot and Ankle. you can schedule a consultation to discuss your condition. Consultations are covered by most insurances.