Untreated Bunions Cause Other Foot Problems
A bunion (or bunionette as it is called when it appears on your littlest toe) starts off as a small bony bump on the edge of your big toe joint (or on the outside of your pinky toe). Bunions are generally not that painful in their beginning stages, so many people ignore them, but over a period of months and years, the condition can get so bad that surgery is required to realign the toes.
As a bunion grows and worsens, it also has been linked to the formation of other deformities and problems that can be avoided with earlier care of the bunion.
Some of these conditions include:
Irritation, redness, and swelling—The big toe bump will rub against the inside of your footwear causing inflammation and pain.
Formation of hammertoes—The chances that you will see a hammertoe develop on the second or third toe are more likely if you have bunions.
Corns and other skin conditions—Corns can form on or next to the bunion and blisters may occur in response to rubbing on your footwear. Painful corns can also develop on top of hammertoes.
Ingrown and fungal toenails—As the toe increases pressure on the nails, it may cause a nail to grow into your skin. A fungal toenail infection is also possible.
In the earlier stages, you can treat your bunions at home doing foot and toe strengthening and flexing exercises, and by wearing shoes with a wider toe box to allow room for your toes to move.
You can also see your podiatrist for specially-made pads and braces that will help realign the toes. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to decrease the bump and straighten the toe.
The earlier you get the advice and help of your foot doctor, the less problematic your bunions will become. Dr. Scott Nelson of Foot and Ankle Medical Clinic in Garland, TX is a board-certified and highly experienced podiatrist who has helped people suffering from all types of foot and ankle injuries and deformities. From bunions to diabetic foot problems, sports injuries and fungal nails, you can trust that Dr. Nelson and his staff are wholeheartedly devoted to your foot health. Please contact our office with any questions you may have or to schedule an appointment by calling 972-414-9800.