Bunions are caused by your big toe joints becoming incorrectly aligned. This causes the first bone at the base of the your big toe to slant outward (or be prominent inside the foot) and the great toe to angle toward your other toes. Your joints then begin to swell. It causes a bump of bone on the foot that can become very painful if left untreated. It will also cause pain in most shoes and many activities.
Bunions can be hereditary, but also can be aggravated by shoes that aren’t a good fit. Surgery is often recommended as the only way to correct the problem. Most bunions can be treated, however, without surgery by wearing protective pads to cushion the painful area, orthotics to change the foot functioning to reduce pressure in this area and of course, avoiding ill-fitting shoes in the first place.
Brandt R Gibson, DPM
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Podiatrist, Neuropathy Doctor, Father of 11 and Founder of Mountain West Foot & Ankle Institute