What Is a Bunion?

What is that bump on your foot right below your big toe?
That bump is probably a bunion. If the bump is on the other side of your foot, it is called a tailor’s bunion.
The tendency toward having bunions is hereditary. Yes, while you may not be able to readily tell that you have the same bone structure in your foot as your Mom or Dad, you can. Ask and you may find that they have a bunion also. A bunion can also be formed when the bones in your foot are turned just a bit more than the norm.
Wearing ill-fitting shoes can push the bones in your foot over into the land of a bunion. It is that constant pressure from shoes that are not quite right that can be the impetus for the bones to go out of alignment.
Also, if you have an accident that affected your feet, a bunion can form. Since a bunion is caused by a misalignment of the bones, then if you injured your feet in such a way that the bones shifted, a bunion can form.
Sometimes, people with arthritis will have a bunion form on their foot.
A bunion can be made up of a bone that is slightly tilted out and can have a bursa, which is a fluid filled sac.  Bunions can be quite painful. The bump will rub up against shoes and become inflamed. The size of the bunion does not necessarily indicate the amount of pain that you will feel. Some people will not have any pain even though they have a large bunion. Some people will feel great pain from a small bunion.
A trip to your friendly local podiatrist is in order to discuss your bunion options. You can try some simple changes to see if it helps you. The first step is to make sure that you wear shoes that do not rub on the bunion. This is particularly important if you are in pain. The best way to ease the pain is not to have your shoes rubbing on the bunion.
If you are diabetic and you notice a bunion on your foot, you need to go to the podiatrist and get your foot checked. Many diabetics have decreased sensitivity in their feet and you don’t want to have a sore form on your foot that could get infected. With diabetics, the bunion should be checked just because you may not feel the pain.
The podiatrist will probably have your foot x-rayed. This way you and the doctor can see about the alignment of the bones in your foot. It may be that surgery is the best option for you. I know, I hate to say that but depending upon your pain level and your bone structure, it may be the way for you to get relief.
With the end of the year coming, it is a great time for you to check out your bunion situation. There is still time to be able to have the surgery under this year’s deductible. Or maybe you have a health savings account and there are funds there. It could be the perfect time to be able to feel better.
We want to take this opportunity to wish you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving and to thank you for trusting us with your foot care and questions.  You are special to us every day of the year.
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If you live or work downtown Chicago and would like to see one of the friendly podiatrists there, don’t worry! You can head over to the office on the “Magnificent Mile” in Chicago. Stop in and say “Hello”. They would love to meet you. They are really that friendly!
Mag Mile Foot and Ankle Institute
333 N. Michigan Avenue Suite 1825
Chicago, IL   60601


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