Bone & Joint Pain FAQs
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Why do bunions cause so much pain?
As the deformity progresses, the bump on the inside of your foot becomes more prominent. There is a nerve (medial dorsal cutaneous nerve) that travels directly over the bump at the great toe joint. So not only do you have pain from the shoe pressing on the bone, but there is direct pressure on the nerve! Imagine having someone hit your funny bone, on your elbow, on a daily basis.
Will my bunion pain get better with time?
You may get temporary relief with conservative treatments, but generally speaking, your pain will not improve with time. In most cases, bunion pain actually gets worse with time.
Can I still wear dress shoes/high heels if I have a bunion?
It depends on your level of pain. If you only have pain with wearing certain shoes, you may have to limit the kind of shoes you wear on a regular basis. If you have a nice pair of shoes you only wear to special events, it is OK for there to be some level of discomfort, as long as it goes away shortly after wearing the shoes.
Can bunions be prevented?
No. Although some people may try orthotics or splint devices, there is no evidence that supports any treatment claiming to prevent bunions.
When do I need to seek treatment for bunions?
This is the most commonly asked question among patients with a bunion deformity. Luckily, there is a simple answer: only if the bunion causes pain!
If you do not have an pain associated with your bunion, you have to consider that treatment, whether conservative or surgical, may cause some level of discomfort, which would be more htan what you had to begin with. If you only have pain with wearing certain shoes, you may need to consider other shoe options. If your pain is consistent, and you are limited from your activities or desired lifestyle, then treatment is recommended before the conditions worsen.