6 FAQ’s About Bunions: Our Harrisburg Foot Doctor Has Answers!

February 27, 2018

A bunion is a large bump on the base of your toe that forms over time and causes difficulty walking. If you think you might have a bunion, you may have questions about the condition.

1. How Do Bunions Form?

Bunions form when your big toe leans toward your outer toes. This is a common foot deformity, but over time, the big toe will push against the first metatarsal bone. Then, the skin will thicken and a bony lump will form at the base of the toe.

2. What Causes Bunions?

Some people are born with the foot deformity that leads to bunions. Other people develop bunions from wearing tight shoes that put too much pressure on their toes. Women are more likely to get bunions then men, likely because women wear tight shoes and high heels that can deform the foot bones over time.

3. Why Are Bunions So Painful?

Bunions usually enlarge with age. After 10 or 20 years of your big toe pointing outward, you may develop arthritis in the joint connecting your big toe with your foot. This makes it difficult or impossible to use your big toe when you walk, so you’ll put more pressure on your second toe instead. Over time, this will result in two deformed toes, both of which hurt to walk on.

4. What Are the Symptoms of a Bunion?

Bunions are usually easy to notice. Typical symptoms include:

  • A bony bump where your big toe meets your foot
  • A swollen, red, or shiny bump
  • A bump that feels warm or painful when touched

5. When Should I Contact My Local Foot Doctor About a Bunion?

If you feel pain when you walk, even if you’re walking in flat and loose shoes that should be comfortable, you should contact your podiatrist. Your local foot doctor can give you suggestions for bunion correction treatment or surgery.

6. How Do You Treat a Bunion?

Common treatments for bunions include:

  • Foam or gel pads that help realign the toes
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Cortisone injections for pain management
  • Bunion correction surgery

Surgery can straighten your big toe and stop it from pointing outward. After recovering, you should be able to walk normally without pain.

If you have a bunion that is causing pain or difficulty walking, contact our office today to meet with a Harrisburg podiatrist.

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