How to Treat Bunions Without Surgery

Bunions are a very common foot problem, with more than twenty percent of adults affected at some point, usually after the age of fifty. The telltale bump of a bunion form on the big toe as it bends towards your other toes. Initially, bunions may not be very painful, but as the condition progresses, you can experience increasing discomfort, rubbing, and over and underlapping toe problems.

The following non-surgical treatments for bunions can be very beneficial:

  • Wear properly fitted shoes–Always wear properly fitted shoes with a wide toe box to give enough room to the bunion bump and avoid friction.
  • Use insulating bunion pads–These can help prevent rubbing from inside your shoes
  • Rest and icing–Try icing the bunion several times a day for ten to fifteen minutes to reduce inflammation and pain. Ibuprofen or Tylenol may also help.
  • Change your exercise routine–Switching to exercises like swimming that is less stressful to your feet will help your bunions heal.
  • Custom orthotic insertsYour foot doctor can recommend a custom shoe insert.
  • Night brace–This brace is worn while sleeping and pulls the big toe into proper position. You will need to wear them for many months.
  • Physical therapy exercises–These exercises can help to relieve and prevent stiffness and maintain flexibility.

For severe bunions, you may need surgery to realign the toe and decrease the pain. The type of bunion surgery will depend upon the severity of the bunion, and if other toes are involved, the procedure will be more complex.

Discuss bunion treatment options with your foot doctor. At Your Next Step, our team of board-certified podiatrists has access to advanced technologies, along with years of experience, to help diagnose and treat a variety of foot and ankle problems, including sports injuries, joint pain, toe deformities, nail fungus, chronic tendon pain, and skin problems. Dr. Eric Ricefield, Dr. Mark Yagodich, and Dr. Aliza V. Eisen provide high-quality foot and ankle care to patients in the greater Philadelphia area at our offices conveniently located in Ardmore, Paoli, Woodlyn, and Downingtown. Please contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment.

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