Bunions are a foot condition that we treat frequently at Texas Foot Specialists. There are, however, many misconceptions surrounding this common podiatric problem. How much do you know about bunions? See the True/False statements below to find out:
Bunions are more of a problem for women than men.
TRUE: Although men can get bunions too, they occur 10 times more often in women. This may be due in part to the fact that women frequently wear high heels with narrow toe boxes which squeeze the toes and can help force the joint of the big toe out of place, which in turn causes the characteristic bump to form on the outside of the toe.
You can have a bunion for a long time and not even know it.
TRUE: The characteristic bump on the side of the big toe only forms when the toe moves far enough out of place and toward the second toe to cause a deformity to develop. Since most of the pain from bunions is due to the pressure and friction put on the bony enlargement many patients have no symptoms up until that point.
Bunions can go away without treatment.
FALSE: Bunions are a progressive condition.
Women who are pregnant have a higher likelihood of developing a bunion.
TRUE: This is because during pregnancy the body produces increased levels of certain hormones that relax ligaments and joints in the body to prepare it for giving birth. For your feet, however, this can mean a greater tendency for the big toe joint to shift out of place. People in professions that require them to be on their feet for long periods of time are also more susceptible to bunions, including: teachers, dancers and nurses.
The only treatment for bunions is to have them surgically removed.
FALSE: There are many conservative treatments for bunions that can bring relief and slow the progression of the deformity. These include: taping and padding the affected toe, custom orthotics to realign the toe and also take pressure of the painful area, changing to shoes with roomy toe boxes.
The only way to determine what type of relief will work best for your bunion is to have one of our podiatrists, Dr. Bruce Miller and Dr. Gregory Mangum, examine your bunion. Contact our Pasadena, Sugarland or Houston office for an appointment today.