Howard County Foot & Ankle

A Simple Guide on Bunions: Definition, Causes, and Prevention

Foot & Ankle Insights
Guide on Bunions

If you are not familiar with this foot issue, you might want to get yourself familiarized with bunions now, so you can seek treatments for it later. Check out this essential guide.

Foot pain is one of the worst types of pain, especially if you are always on your feet as you need to avoid agitating the condition that causes this. If your foot pain is caused by a bony, protruding form on the inside of your feet, then you might have bunions.

What are Bunions?

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons defines bunions as a bony bump that forms at the joint of the foot when the two bones are pushed toward the inside of the foot. The MTP joint, the joint connecting these two bones, is enlarged and, in most cases, inflamed. These are painful, especially when wearing constraining shoes.

There are different types of bunions aside from regular ones. You can have adolescent bunions, which are formed in patients aged 10 to 15. This can be caused by wrong shoes, but it is often genetic. Bunionettes are another type, which refers to a similar bump in the little finger’s joint.

Bunions are diagnosed using physical examination and x-rays. To treat these, patients need to make changes in footwear, apply remedies and medications and use medical devices like splits, toe spacers, and inserts. Surgery may be needed when all else fails. Contact us if you have any questions that we can help you answer.

What Causes Bunions?

Bunions, also called hallux valgus, tend to form slowly. They often develop because of bad habits, specifically in the type of shoes you wear. If you tend to wear shoes that are smaller in size than what you need, too narrow, or those that tighten at the toes, you have a higher chance of forming bunions.

Such types of shoes put pressure on your big toe, which then moves toward the second toe. The worse part is this habit can cause other foot issues. It can cause bursitis, which is the inflammation of the bursa or a sac that cushions the bone closest to the MTP joint. This can be painful, as well.

In worse cases, it can lead to foot deformation, as the big toe pushes the second toe, which then pushes the third toe, and so on.

Bunions Paddings

How Do You Prevent Bunions from Forming?

If you want to avoid bunions, or if you have a minor case and you want to correct it, your best bet is to change the type of footwear you use. You want to get a properly fitting pair that leaves ample room for your toes.

Keep in mind that people have different foot shapes. Make sure to choose shoes that are closest to yours. Plus, look for options that are well-padded. You might also want to purchase paddings that can help cushion your bones, minimizing the pressure placed on the MTP joint.


Bunions can be an inconvenient source of pain. The good news is you can treat it early, or if you have a more severe case, you can ask your doctor for help.

Tags :
Bunions,Hallux Valgus,Orthopedic Surgeons
Share This :