While women are nine times as likely to get bunions as men, the condition does not seem to further discriminate with young women being affected as well. 26-year-old Kacey Barker of Massachusetts found herself with a painful bunion that kept getting worse and even caused her to limit the athletic activities she participated in. “A lot of my friends thought bunions are for women who are old or who wear high-heeled shoes for decades,” said Barker. Barker, who tends to select more supportive and sensitive shoes, chose to have surgery to correct the problem after the pain became unbearable. “There’s a misconception that shoes cause the bunions. Shoes aggravate it and make it symptomatic. It starts to occur in the early phases of young adulthood, and as time goes on, it progresses,” said Michael Trepal, professor of surgery at the New York College of Podiatric Medicine.
Bunions themselves are a common problem women face. If you are experiencing toe pain or foot pain that you think might be related to bunions, it is recommended to seek the care of a podiatrist like Dr. Charles Chapel of Chapel Podiatry. Dr. Chapel can examine your bunions, diagnose the condition, and provide the appropriate treatment options to you.
What is a Bunion?
A bunion is an enlargement of the base joint of the toe that connects to the foot. The enlargement is formed of swollen tissue or boney growth. This swelling is caused by a shifting of the bones in the big toe inward, impacting the other toes of the foot. The area around the base of the big toe may become inflamed, red, and/or painful.
Genetics – people who are susceptible to bunions are often genetically predisposed.
Stress on the feet – wearing improperly fitting shoes or running and walking with improper form may cause stress on the feet. Wearing high heeled shoes puts the weight from the body onto the toes, causing further stress and bone displacement.
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