Bunions make it difficult to start the day on the right foot.
In fact, this condition interferes with even the most basic daily routines. Exercising, running, and even walking become painful. Yet the problems are much deeper. If untreated, bunions only get worse over time.
That's why bunions require immediate attention. And Virginia Foot & Ankle Surgical Associates in Charlottesville, VA can help. Dr. Joseph Disabato and his team can provide innovative, expert treatment options. But they are also a great resource too.
With this in mind, the clinic's experienced staff answers five common questions about bunions.
What Is a Bunion?
Known clinically as hallux valgus, bunions are structural deformities that appear in the joint of the big toe. This occurs when the first metatarsal, which is the foot bone directly behind the big toe, migrates towards the center of the body. As a result, this forces the big toe inward towards the others.
What Causes Bunions to Form?
While bunions themselves aren't genetic disorders, certain foot abnormalities at birth can make bunions more likely in some individuals. This is influenced by a foot's shape and type. Foot stress and arthritis are also risk factors. However, the leading culprit is tight or ill-fighting shoes. These place additional pressure on the toes. For this reason, women who regularly wear high heels are much more likely to experience bunions.
What Are the Symptoms of Bunions?
Bunions aren't difficult to detect. The shifting of the foot's bones produces a bony lump at the base of the big toe. This protrusion can also become red, swollen, and inflamed, making it feel warm or painful if touched. Stiffness is another common symptom.
When Should I Seek Treatment?
In short, sooner rather than later. Although bunions aren't dangerous, they bring discomfort. Additionally, they only get progressively more painful over time. Once it becomes too difficult to walk or wear shoes comfortably, it might be time to reach out to a bunion specialist in Charlottesville, VA. Only a doctor can determine what treatment will be ideal.
What Treatment Options Are Available?
Start with some at-home remedies. Using cushioned inserts, additional padding, or switching footwear entirely may do the trick. Rest, ice, altering activity levels, and over-the-counter medications can alleviate pain as well. Yet nearly all of these solutions treat only the symptoms. More corrective measures may be required. As a last resort, surgery to remove the bunion may be necessary.
Contact a Podiatrist Today
When it comes to bunions, time won't heal all. The pain will only intensify with time. If you are suffering from bunions, Dr. Disabato can offer some much-needed relief. Call for more information today at (434) 977-8040 for the office in Charlottesville, VA, and (540) 825-1350 for the office in Culpeper, VA.