What Puts You Most at Risk of Developing Bunions?

What Puts You Most at Risk of Developing Bunions?

More than 20% of men and women ages 18-65 have bunions, and more than 35% of men and women over age 65 have these toe deformities. Along with age, there are several other factors that can make it more likely you’ll develop bunions.

If you have a bunion, Premier Podiatry can get rid of it. Read on to learn what bunions are, why they develop, and what you can do about them.

What is a bunion?

The medical term for a bunion is hallux valgus, and it’s a deformity of your metatarsophalangeal (MTP) joint. The MTP joint is the joint at the base of your big toe. When you have a bunion, a bony bump begins to form on the joint, and the toe begins to grow inward.

Bunions develop in response to an abnormal foot structure caused by genetics, stress on your foot, or from a disease, such as arthritis.

What can increase your chances of developing a bunion?

Shoes

Ill-fitting shoes, such as high heels, can trigger a bunion to begin forming. High heels are especially problematic because they force your weight forward onto the front part of your foot. If you’re predisposed to developing bunions, wearing high heels will increase your risk even more.

If you’re worried about bunions, your best bet when it comes to footwear is to choose shoes with plenty of room in the toe box. You’ll also want to make sure your shoes have a wide sole that is flexible and is no more than one inch high.

Occupation

If your job requires you to be on your feet for hours at a time, you have a higher chance of getting bunions. Ballet dancers are particularly susceptible to developing bunions due to the extreme stress on their feet.

Genetics

The biggest risk factor for developing bunions is genetics. The shape and structure of your foot is inherited, and it plays a big role in whether or not you develop bunions. For example, if you have low arches or flat feet, you’re more likely to get bunions.

If bunions run in your family, your chances of getting them are much higher. However, if you follow precautions, such as not wearing high heels, you won’t exacerbate your existing risk.

Treatment is important

Your MTP joint is critical for your foot to function properly. It bears your body’s weight when you’re standing or performing physical activities. Also, a bunion can cause damage to your other toes or lead to damage in other parts of your foot.

If you have a bunion, the staff at Premier Podiatry can give you conservative treatments, such as orthotics, custom shoes, or padding. They can also give you a splint to help realign your toe. If conservative methods don’t work, they can provide surgery to remove the bunion and realign your toe.

If you want your bunion treated or want to learn more about how to best prevent getting them, book an appointment online or over the phone with Premier Podiatry today.

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