No one thinks much about their feet until they hurt. Bunions, or Hallux valgus, are common foot deformities which cause significant pain, soreness, redness, and yes, deformity. While your grandmother may have put up with her bunions, you can receive expert care from your podiatrist in Ocala, FL, Dr. Robert Linn, Jr. He understands bunions and can help you choose the right treatment plan.
It hurts, but what else?
A bony prominence at the base of the big toe, a bunion causes considerable friction within the shoe, leading to swelling, pain, disfigurement and gait impairment. A definite inward turn of the big toe toward the second and even third toe of either or both feet, a bunion typically occurs from mid-life on.
Women develop bunions more often than men do, and age and hereditary factors plan a role in their development. While people speculate that tight shoes cause bunions, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons says that improper footwear does not form bunions but may worsen existing ones.
What's the best way to treat a bunion?
Oral examination and X-rays from your podiatrist at the Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala in Ocala, FL, will help you determine your best course of treatment.
The simple strategies Dr. Linn may advise include:
- Change of shoes to ones with low heels (no higher than 2-1/2 inches) and plenty of room in the toe boxes
- Weight loss
- Night time bunion splints (most effective for adolescents)
- Moleskin padding to lessen pressure from shoes
- Customized shoe inserts (orthotics) to correct gait problems
- In severe or persistent cases, surgery may be needed.
Because your foot is uniquely yours, your treatment plan may vary. However, rest assured that Dr. Linn and his staff will work with you to alleviate your pain, increase mobility in the foot, and prevent progression of this deformity.
Healthy, happy feet
That's what Dr. Linn specializes in. If you believe you have a bunion, or just would like a routine podiatric examination, please call your podiatrist at Foot & Ankle Center of Ocala for an appointment in Ocala, FL, at (352) 861-1055.