EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT BUNIONS
HALLUX VALGUS, commonly known as a BUNION, is an inborn or acquired foot deformity. This bony bump formed on the joint at the base of the big toe develops frequently with transverse platypodia. Bunions are the result of progressing lateral deviation of the hallux (i.e. great toe) in the metatarsophalangeal joint and medial deviation in the position of the first metatarsal bone. A reddening and oedema develop on the hallux and pain is also present.
The deformity is common, especially among women. It involves at least one in forty female patients over the age of 50. That constitutes a social problem, since patients suffering from bunions have significant difficulties in walking.
WHY DO BUNIONS DEVELOP?
Factors that are known to increase the risk of bunions include:
- Genetic predisposition - foot type is hereditary therefore bunions often run in families
- Wearing high-heeled shoes – this footwear pushes weight forward, which forces toes into the front of the shoes and causes pressure on the joint at the base of the big toes
- Wearing tight fitting or pointed shoes - that puts pressure on the toes and forefoot and can increase inflammation and pain
- Connective and muscular tissue diseases
ADVICE FOR PEOPLE WHO SUFFER FROM BUNIONS
- Wear comfortable low-heeled shoes of appropriate size, with not too narrow heel, made of air-permeable material, not allowing feet to sweat.
- Change shoes several times a day to alter foot pressure distribution.
- Maintain appropriate body weight.
- Avoid prolonged work in standing position.
- After taking your shoes off, perform toe exercises by spreading them, bending, extending in direction opposite to the valgity and also perform circular movements while abducting the great toe.
- Put MARCIN bunion regulator on your foot for the night and at any free time and use MARCIN II or MARCIN II LUX regulators while walking.
Treatment of hallux valgus in later stages of the condition is troublesome and requires systematic and continuous effort. There is still a possibility of significant inhibition of the progression of the deformity and of pain reduction without the need for surgical treatment.
BUNION PREVENTION AND TREATMENT
- regular feet exercises,
- choosing comfortable shoes that fit properly and don’t cramp toes,
- wearing bunion regulators, eg. MARCIN splints, MARCIN II or MARCIN II LUX interdigital wedges
- surgical treatment – when the deformity is at advanced stages.