According to the Canadian Federation of Podiatric Medicine, approximately 6% of Canadians experience foot injuries such as bunions each year. A bunion (hallux valgus) is an enlargement of tissue or bone around the base of the big toe. Many different forms of footwear place pressure on the joint at the base of the big toe where the majority of your weight falls each time you walk. This pressure from shoes may force the big toe to bend or cause the formation of a bunion. A bunion may result in swelling, stiffness, irritated skin, and pain.
If you’ve been suffering from bunions, here are some simple techniques you can try to help ease that pain.
Wear Comfortable Shoes That Fit Correctly
The first step in minimizing pain and reducing the likelihood of developing bunions, is comfortable shoes with adequate support that fit correctly. Do not force your feet and toes to squeeze into tight, uncomfortable shoes that pinch your toes and squish them together for the sake of fashion. Women are especially prone to bunions, as high-heeled, pointed shoes are a common culprit. If you are suffering from bunions, invest in proper comfort footwear that is perfectly fitted to your foot.
Protect Your Feet with Moleskin or Gel Pad
If you still experience painful sensations when wearing your regular footwear, you can add an extra layer of protection that can also buffer that friction. Moleskin or gel pads can work well by simply covering the bunion up to reduce painful friction.
Consider Using Shoe Inserts
Shoe inserts can help to alleviate the pressure placed on your feet and evenly disperse the weight from your body when walking. If you have a high arch or extremely flat feet, custom orthotics could really benefit you. It’s important to take the time to get used to them as it may take your feet a little time to adjust. The insert will provide stability for your feet, and reduce pressure in the arch and ball of your feet.
Keep the Weight Off Your Feet
Maintaining a healthy weight is not only good for your overall health and wellness, but it can also directly impact your feet and bunions. When you have less weight to carry around with every step, there will be less pressure on your feet.
Bunions can be reversed if caught early enough. Wearing proper footwear or using a custom orthotic insole can help the foot regain its proper shape. In severe cases, surgery may be required.
Take Steps to Reduce Bunion Pain
If you’re suffering from bunion pain, try incorporating some of these techniques to help minimize that pain so that you can walk through life in comfort. Visit your local Foot Solution footwear store for more specific advice for your condition or to shop for foot health accessories, be fitted for comfort footwear, or to get a foot assessment for custom orthotic insole.