Written by Charlotte Wood (last updated April 8, 2009)
Your feet are used all the time and withstand extreme amounts of pressure and pain to keep you going. You use your feet to go lots of place: school, work, home, the club, the pool. Your feet get lots of wear and tear, and so it's not wonder that they may hurt every once in a while. If you think you may have a bunion, you'll need a couple sets of information: You'll need to know exactly what a bunion is so you can actually diagnose yourself. You'll also need to know how to treat your bunion if it turns out that you have one.
First things first: what is a bunion? Bunions are an enlargement of the tissue around a joint, a structural deformity of the bone. The deformity occurs between the actual foot and the joint of the big toe. You can usually tell that you have a bunion if you have a large bump on the joint of your big toe—bunions are also characterized by swollen tissue around the joint, and they hurt!
So, if turns out that you do have bunions, you'll want to treat them right away. You're going to have to change your footwear so the bunion isn't aggravated—aggravated bunions are no good at all! Depending on the severity of your bunion (or bunions), you might need to have medication or other orthotics. You'll probably want to go your doctor to talk about what types of treatments your should pursue. There is a variety of orthotics available to you: bunion cushions, splints, toe or bunion separators, bunion splints, bunion cushions, and bunion regulators. Talk with your doctor about what treatment methods are best for you.
Some bunions might require surgery. You'll have to go and see a foot specialist to see what course of action is best for you. Bunion surgeries may have several options for the approach: removing the actual enlargement, straightening the toes, realigning the toes, shortening the toes, lengthening the toes. Depending on your own specific situation, you may need more surgery or less surgery. Your bunion surgery depends on several factors, including age, gender, and medical history. Recovery time takes about six to eight weeks, and can be performed under various forms of anesthesia.
Take the necessary steps to remove your bunions, and your feet will forever thank you!
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