Understanding Bunions

One of the primary reasons why women like to accessorize is because they want to look their best. Most women think that accessories whether worn in the head, neck, hands or in other parts of the body can greatly enhance their appearance. That is one reason why most of my clients are women.

While most women put much attention on looking good, some put very little attention on things that are less conspicuous, such as those involving the toes. Certain conditions can affect the toes, causing pain and utmost discomfort if not treated. One of them is bunions. Bunions can affect men but are more common among women. Yet, bunions are one of the least understood conditions among many.

What is a bunion?

A bunion is a bony lump that forms at the base of any toe, occurring more frequently in the big and little toe. If it affects the little toe, it is termed as tailors bunion. It can develop as a result of genetic defects in the foot structure or of wearing too tight, poorly fitted or high heeled shoes. Certain jobs that cause much stress on the foot such as those that entail several hours of standing may also contribute to bunions.

What causes bunions?

There are various factors that can cause bunions depending on what type it is. Bunions generally develop when the toes sustain more stress than normal during regular activities. Certain occupations can also be a contributing factor such as the case of ballet dancer where the feet sustain undue stress during practice and performance.

What are the types of bunion?

  • Acute Bunions – This type of bunion forms because of bursitis. Bursitis occurs when there is inflammation or irritation in the fluid-filled sacs that are responsible for cushioning the joints. Constant inflammation then leads to hardening of the skin near the affected toes. In the long run, it will solidify into a bony mass which is not the bunion. Acute bunions can be painful. You can alleviate the pain by wearing the right size of shoes with extra room in the toes or by wearing shoe inserts. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary to correct the problem.


  • Hallux Valgus – This type is a chronic but more often painless abnormality in the foot involving permanent bone inflexibility. Hallux Valgus will not only strain or create an abnormal bulge on the affected toe, but it will also widen of the base of the foot. It may also interfere with a person’s normal functions like when standing or walking. Wearing ill-fitting shoes and abnormality in the foot structure are the most common causes of this bunion. To treat this problem, most doctors recommend surgery by correcting the misaligned bones.

What are the symptoms of bunions?

Some people are not aware that they already have bunions. Symptoms include having a firm bump at the base of the big or little toes, swelling or redness on the affected joint and restricted motion of the affected toe.

You may be able to neglect your bunion at its earlier stages. But the more you do nothing about it, the more it will linger and the more you will suffer from its symptoms. It is best to consult your doctor on the proper way to treat it.