Once a bunion forms on your foot, there is no way to correct them other than surgery. The bump on the side of the foot is formed because of a rotation of the bone and bunion surgery repositions the bone to achieve correction. That's not to say that every bunion needs surgery.
In my Houston podiatry practice I see the gamut of bunions: from mild-looking bunions that are very painful to horribly deformed bunions that haven't provided a minute of pain. The treatment of a bunion should correlate to the discomfort it provides and its presence restricts you in any way.
Discomfort from a bunion typically comes in two forms: pain deep in the great toe joint and pain where the bunion contacts the shoe. When the pain is in the joint, it is possible to control the function and pressure in that joint by treating it with a custom orthotic. The orthotic will also remove the deforming forces that will cause the bunion to get worse with time. This is a treatment option that many choose to prevent or delay future surgery.
When the pain is related to the bump of the bunion, it makes it difficult to wear shoes comfortably. In some cases, the bunion can be cushioned with a bunion pad. In other cases, foot surgery is the best option to correct the bunion. Bunion surgery will reduce the deformity and will ultimately allow you to return to wearing your shoes comfortably.
Bunions will become worse with time so the best time to get your's checked is now. Houston podiatrist and bunion surgeon Dr. Andrew Schneider will evaluate your foot and offer the best recommendation to ensure your bunion is addressed in the best way to meet your goals.